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Three African American students were arrested in New York while waiting on a school bus to take them to a basketball game. Even their coach, who showed up to explain, was threatened with arrest by Rochester police.
The coach had arranged for the bus to take the players to a basketball scrimmage on a closed school day. But police claimed their standing on the sidewalk, apparently at the bus stop location, was blocking pedestrian traffic, so police ordered the boys to disperse.
Coach Jacob Scott told the press that he spoke to the officers with dignity, and the teens weren’t doing anything wrong, and still the coach was threatened and the teens were arrested and traumatized, along with others in the crowd. All three were said to have no prior record and were star basketball players at their school.
School board member Mary Adams is outraged at the incident as well as the DA’s plan to proceed with a trial against the teens. She insists all charges be dropped.
Tell the Rochester Police Department you agree. Drop all charges against these students!
We, the undersigned, believe these teens did nothing to provoke a police arrest.
One teen told the local TV station in Rochester that, after being ordered to disperse, the teens were even walking away when they were arrested. Furthermore there was no report that they did anything other than wait where they had been told to wait to catch a bus.
The local TV station explained that police had been monitoring the area because management of the store near where the students were waiting to catch the bus had complained about loitering in the past, and that the teens were initially accused of loitering.
On top of being severely traumatized by this abuse of authority, the families had to post bail to get the children out of jail for Thanksgiving.
Now they and their children are going to be further traumatized by a trail on December 11 unless the police and DA come to their senses and drop the charges against these students.
We request these charges be dropped immediately and that Rochester Police Department apologize to the coach, the students and their families.
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