Ramarley Graham's Mother Speaks Out: NYPD Cop Who Killed My Son Should Be Charged With Murder
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Let me just say something else. The statute, right, of burglary, right, is you have any intent to break in someone’s house, right? The statute states that in the commission of a burglary—a felony, right? In the commission of a felony, you cause the death of someone, an innocent person, you have to be charged with felony murder, right? Have you ever heard of anyone killing a cop and getting charged with manslaughter? You know? So, are we saying that cops are treated much differently from the average citizen? Something is wrong with that.
AMY GOODMAN: You’ve coined a new term, talking—you were just talking about if someone is a cop killer, what would happen to them.
CARLTON BERKLEY Well, we need to treat cops that kill people unjustifiably the same as cop killers. So, you know, killer cops need to be treated as cop killers.
AMY GOODMAN: Constance Malcolm, can you talk about who Ramarley was, your 18-year-old son?
CONSTANCE MALCOLM: Ramarley was a fun-loving child. He loved his brother, his sister. Him and his sister, when they was younger, I used to dress them alike, so people would think they’re twins, because they’re only a couple of years apart.
AMY GOODMAN: This is Leona.
CONSTANCE MALCOLM: Leona, yeah. So, you know, him and her was—they was close. They was close. You might not see them much outside, but when they was younger, because my daughter played basketball. She used to always take him to the court to play. Ramarley was never a basketball person. He didn’t like the roughness. So he would just sit on the sideline. They always tease him that he don’t want to play ball. He loves to listen to music, R&B, because a lot of times when a lot of songs comes out—because I listen to mostly R&B. Like, for instance, when Alicia Keys first came out, "Fallin’," he’s the one that told me about it. Karyn White, "Witness in Me," he’s the one that told me about it. So he likes music. He likes to exercise with his little brother, Chinnor. You know, they used to do push-ups together. And Chinnor would love that. He takes Chinnor to go to school. He picks him up sometimes. You know, Marley was just a loving person. He will help anybody. He will have his [inaudible] and give it to anybody. That’s just who he was. And that’s how I grew all my kids, to respect people and to, you know, respect people in the way you want to be respected. He was just a loving kid.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And in terms of this whole issue that we’ve been discussing, the march on Sunday, stop-and-frisk, had he had problems in the past of being stopped by police, as well as many teenagers and other young folks around the city have had numerous situations where they’re just stopped on the street by police?
ROYCE RUSSELL: Well, let me answer that question, in that, as you see, from commentary, from those that you ask, "Have you ever been stopped and frisked before?" it’s probably highly unusual that you can grow up in New York City, African American or Latino, and walk the face of this earth, to and from school, in Bronx County, Kings County, Queens, Manhattan, and not be a subject of a stop-and-frisk, which we all know that doesn’t mean you were doing something wrong, but be subject to a stop-and-frisk. I wish Ramarley was here to maybe tell us the stories of when he was stopped and frisked, if he was stopped and frisked, because we know oftentimes that many kids don’t even reveal that to their parents. It’s become such the norm that they don’t even come home and say, "Hey, Ma, you know what? Today a police officer pulled me over and went through my bag." It is a norm. And part of what I do, not only practicing law in this area, is do seminars to tell kids, "It is not the norm. Don’t think that this is the way life is supposed to be, that you walk out your house, you walk down the block, and somebody’s supposed to say, 'Hey, let me see your ID.' You haven’t done anything."