Friends, I’m delighted to share with you that I had an essay published today with Pangyrus. It’s a piece I’ve spent more than eighteen months editing and tinkering with and changing and changing and changing and I’m so happy that it’s found a home.
Here’s a brief excerpt:
A is for the Allen residence.
The Allen residence is where Wendell James Allen, a twenty-year-old Black man, used to live with his grandmother. In 2012 the New Orleans police department received a tip about the possibility of a marijuana dealer living at the Allen home in the Gentilly neighborhood. After officers allegedly witnessed several exchanges in the driveway of the home it was determined that a raid was warranted.
On the afternoon of March 7th Wendell Allen was in his bedroom upstairs when he heard a commotion. He heard the sounds of his siblings screaming and crying and the crashing of officers bashing in the front door with a battering ram. Wearing only a pair of jeans, a shirtless, empty-handed Wendell scrambled down the stairs where he was shot on sight by Officer Joshua Colclough.
Police later charged Wendell’s brother, David, with simple possession but Wendell himself was never charged or linked to the marijuana in any way. He died at the scene.
B is for Benjamin Murdy.
Benjamin Murdy is a 43-year-old white man who warned police officers that he would shoot them if they responded to a domestic violence call from his wife. When officers showed up at his house on Oak Ridge Drive in Hartford, Connecticut on January 21, 2020, Murdy made good on his promise. He fired nearly 200 shots at officers as they tried to coax him from his home. He had already shot his neighbor (who survived) and a dog (who did not). “No deputies fired a single round in return,” Sheriff Jeffrey R. Gahler said at a press conference later in the week. Murdy was taken into custody without incident.
C is for “calculating the curve.”
You can catch the rest of the piece here. Thanks for celebrating with me!