Injured Baton Rouge police officer sues Black Lives Matter
A police officer wounded in a shooting rampage in Baton Rouge last July that ended in the deaths of 3 policemen is suing Black Lives Matter for incitement to riot.
The lawsuit filed in a U.S. district court in Louisiana named DeRay McKesson and four other Black Lives Matter leaders as defendants and sought at least $75,000 in damages.
It came on the one-year anniversary of one of the deadliest days in modern U.S. history for law enforcement. On July 7, 2016, a black man angered by what he saw as deadly racial bias in U.S. policing launched a downtown Dallas sniper attack, killing five officers deployed at a protest decrying police shootings of black men.
McKesson was not immediately available for comment and Black Lives Matter leaders have denied accusations that their movement promotes violence against police.
About 10 days after the Dallas shooting, a decorated ex-U.S. Marine sergeant opened fire on police in Baton Rouge, killing three officers.
Baton Rouge had been hit by waves of protests after two police officers earlier that month killed a black man, Alton Sterling, under questionable circumstances. The incident was caught on video and sparked national debate.
The officer wounded in Baton Rouge, who was not named in the lawsuit, was shot by "a person violently protesting against police, and which violence was caused or contributed to by the leaders of and by 'BLACK LIVES MATTER'," the filing said.
Gavin Long, the black gunman who killed the Baton Rouge officers and was later shot dead, identified himself as a member of an African-American offshoot of the anti-government, mostly white Sovereign Citizen Movement, documents showed.
When Black Lives Matter contiuously referred to police as "terrorists" and that they were deliberately targeting black men for death, the reaction in the black community was predictable. Some BLM activists framed the attacks on police as self defense. Others justified the attacks as being a backlash against police brutality.
McKesson, who visited the Obama White House and lectured at Yale University, has used incendiary rhetoric against police in the past. But was it incitement to target policemen for death? That will be up to a court of law to determine.
But even if the court finds that the legal standard of incitement was not achieved, anyone who has listened to the chant, "Pigs in a blanket, fry 'em like bacon" knows full well what BLM activists were advocating.