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Letter to the Mayor and Police Chief of St. Anthony, MN on Philando Castile

Here’s a letter that MOBB United members sent to Mayor Jerry Faust and Police Chief Jon Mangseth of St. Anthony, Minnesota following the decision to reinstate the officer who killed Philando Castile on July 6, 2016 to duty on the police force. This killing, along with the death of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge the day before along with numerous other previous unjustified killings of Black males by law enforcement, inspired the creation of MOBB United.

We were thrilled when the decision to reinstate Officer Jeronimo Yanez was reversed. He will remain off duty until the investigation is complete. We believe this demonstrates how local community advocacy combined with national pressure can lead to change. We will continue to follow this case and look for opportunities to partner with other local communities to effect change in their areas. We will post opportunities for you to join us in this mission here on the site. As moms of Black sons, we live in constant fear that an unfortunate police encounter could lead to our sons not returning back home alive. This is not acceptable, and as moms, we can no longer be silent on this issue. We want to partner with other concerned citizens, law enforcement agencies, community organizations and elected officials to change this. Please join us on this journey to make the world a better and safer place for our sons!

August 24, 2016

Mayor Jerry Faust
St. Anthony Minnesota

Moms of Black Boys United (MOBB United) is an international group of more than 132,000 concerned mothers of Black boys and men. We are shocked and outraged by the decision to reinstate Officer Jeronimo Yanez to the St. Anthony Police Department and request that you step in and enforce the reversal of this reinstatement immediately!

In re-instating Office Yanez, the city of St. Anthony displays a lack of accountability, lack of compassion for the Castile family, and lack of concern for our sons. In consideration of this and following his abhorrent and irresponsible actions, we demand Officer Yanez be removed from the force.

Though our members come from various races and demographics, from coast to coast in the United States and beyond. We are all well aware of the apparent racial profiling in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. In an area where only 7 percent of your residents are Black, nearly half of the St. Anthony police department’s arrests in the first half of 2016 were of Black people. Your choice to ignore the facts and allow this incompetent officer to come back to work, without consequence, is as destructive to the community as the actual killing of Mr. Castile.

Mayor Faust, in your defense of Officer Yanez’s character, do YOU also defend his actions that led to the death of an innocent man on July 7, 2016? Do you defend the apparent racial profiling by YOUR department? We, the Moms of Black Boys United, implore YOU, Mayor Faust, to take the necessary steps to ensure accountability for the senseless death of one of YOUR citizens. The public trust has been broken, and there is no accountability for the actions that led to the reinstatement of Officer Yanez. This is disloyal to the community you swore to protect and serve.

Thank you in advance for your prompt and thoughtful attention to this extraordinarily serious and urgent matter.

A Mom

About MOMS OF BLACK BOYS UNITED: M.O.B.B. United is a nationwide coalition of mothers working together to make the world a safer place for our sons. It started as a Facebook Group on July 7,2016, as a space for mothers of Black sons to share their concerns and fears and propose solutions to the challenges their sons face. Over the past month, the group has grown rapidly from 30 members to more than 132,000 and has developed into an organization. These moms are united in the goal of preventing and prosecuting the harassment and use of deadly force against Black men and boys.

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