The first season of Law & Order: Organized Crime, featured the accusation that police officers gun down innocent black men “with impunity” and suffer no consequences.
The new series, starring Christopher Meloni, brings back the Detective Elliot Stabler character after Meloni left SVU back in 2011 as a result of a break down in contract negotiations. In the new series, Stabler is on the hunt for the person who murdered his wife with a car bomb in the series’ first episode.
In the May 20 episode, “I Got This Rat,” Stabler interviews suspect Angela Wheatley (Tamara Taylor) who tells him of her part in the conspiracy that facilitated the death of Stabler’s wife, Kathy (Isabel Gillies). Wheatley tells Stabler that she sought revenge against him under the mistaken belief that he had a hand in the death of her son.
She tells Stabler that her ex-husband, a criminal named Richard (Dylan McDermott), told her that Stabler was part of a police unit that hunted down and killed her son. Ultimately, Wheatley told Richard that she wanted Stabler to hurt like she did and that she wanted Stabler to lose someone close to him. Stabler, of course, had no part in the young man’s death and was part of no such police unit. Wheatley was lied to.
During her confession, Wheatley accuses the New York Police of gunning down blacks with impunity.
In the lockup, Wheatley recites that Detective Elliot Stabler was, “One of those faceless officers who guns down young black men with impunity and expects never to face any consequences. Richard asked if I wanted him to die, this detective, and I said no. No. I wanted him to suffer like I’m suffering. I wanted… Him to feel…This pain worse than death.”
In another scene, Wheatley self-righteously insists to Ayanna Bell (Danielle Moné Truitt), a black police commander, that she will understand if she ever has a son. “If you ever have a son, you’ll understand you’ll do whatever you’re able to to keep him safe, especially from the police,” she exclaims.
But far from being “faceless” and above consequences, police officers have routinely lost their jobs (even when they end up being innocent), been targeted by the media and BLM protesters, and some have even been murdered by BLM activists. Statistics show that less than 50 unarmed black men are killed by police annually across the country despite the more than three million police encounters with the public each year. There is no statistical basis for the claim that black men are being murdered with impunity by police.
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