Florida police use images of black men for target practice

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    Jan 16, 2015 6:26 PM GMT
    http://thegrio.com/2015/01/15/florida-police-black-men-target-practice/

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    This was discovered last month by one of the sisters of the men whose image was used. Police snipers were shooting at the Medley Police Firearms Training Center; however, after they left, the Florida National Guard came in.

    Sgt. Valarie Deant, a national guardsman, saw the target images that the police left behind and noticed a very familiar face among them: her brother Woody. It was his mugshot, taken years ago.

    “And I was like, why is my brother being used for target practice?” Deant said to NBC Miami. The image of her brother’s face had a bullet hole through his eye and his forehead. Deant said she broke down and cried.

    “She said, ‘Oh my God, they use you as target practice,'” Woody Deant said. “People that are out there who are supposed to be protecting us are using us as target practice.”

    Deant’s mugshot was from an arrest made 15 years ago. He spent four years in prison for a drag-racing accident that claimed two lives. However, he says those days are long behind him and that he is now a family and career man.

    North Miami Police Chief J. Scott Dennis told NBC Miami that they didn’t violate any regulations and that the practice of using images of real people is not limited to his department. He claims that the use of real pictures is important for facial recognition training and that they do use images of non-blacks as well.

    “Our policies were not violated. There is no discipline that’s forthcoming from the individuals regarding this,” Dennis said.

    Dennis did say that he is concerned about the use of Deant’s photo because it happens to be an individual who was arrested by the same precinct and somebody who would be on the streets of North Miami Beach.

    NBC6 spoke to several law enforcement agencies, and they all said that they only use computer generated images distributed by commercial vendors and not images of real people.

    “The use of those targets doesn’t seem correct. The police have different options for targets,” said retired FBI agent Alex Vasquez.

    “This can create a very dangerous situation, and it has been ingrained in your subconscious. What does that mean when someone comes across Woody or another person on the street?” said the Deants’ attorney, Andell Brown.

    “So they see them as criminals before they get a chance to [say] I surrender,” Valarie Deant said.

    Police chief Dennis said that they will continue using target photos of real individuals once they increase their inventory of images.

    This explains a lot…
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  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Jan 16, 2015 6:47 PM GMT
    That's one of the most disturbing things I've ever read. If I saw my loved one's photo being used for target practice, I would probably throw up. Using someone's image as target practice is what people do to their enemies. This is outrageous and unacceptable. The police are increasingly becoming menaces to society, especially in Florida, where the justice system is an abject failure.
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    Jan 16, 2015 7:04 PM GMT
    HottJoe saidThat's one of the most disturbing things I've ever read. If I saw my loved one's photo being used for target practice, I would probably throw up. Using someone's image as target practice is what people do to their enemies. This is outrageous and unacceptable. The police are increasingly becoming menaces to society, especially in Florida, where the justice system is an abject failure.


    I concur. This type of training is despicable. They shouldn't be using anyone's actual face black, white, and everything in between. It's only desensitizing them to the value of human life. No wonder some police officers are so trigger happy.
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    Jan 16, 2015 7:49 PM GMT
    Faraji said
    HottJoe saidThat's one of the most disturbing things I've ever read. If I saw my loved one's photo being used for target practice, I would probably throw up. Using someone's image as target practice is what people do to their enemies. This is outrageous and unacceptable. The police are increasingly becoming menaces to society, especially in Florida, where the justice system is an abject failure.

    I concur. This type of training is despicable. They shouldn't be using anyone's actual face black, white, and everything in between. It's only desensitizing them to the value of human life. No wonder some police officers are so trigger happy.

    Police are being trained to view citizens as targets. And why Black faces? If they were using old mug shots, did they not have any White ones on file?

    They deliberately chose Black faces, because that's who they expect to be shooting. Totally unacceptable, another indication, as you say, that the police themselves are becoming the problem, not the solution.

    I think someone in authority should make the target photos police officers, and see how they like it then. Starting with that Police Chief.