I-Team: Black police officers are in the middle as protests flare, challenges grow

Local News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Black police officers are in the middle.

Black Lives Matter demonstrations over the summer at times were intense. Protesters were outraged over the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man killed in Minneapolis police custody.

Black officers had to stradde a fine line.

They serve the valley in uniform, but are frustrated with the disproportionate number of unarmed Black people killed by police.

Black officers say they’ve faced challenges — both on the job, and in the community — when it comes to their race.

However, the Black Police Officers Association (BPOA) is a way they are breaking down barriers to confront racism.

In recent years, the organization has hosted community events to help build relationships and trust.

President Regina Coward-Holman says if Metro’s mission is to serve people in need, then they must be held accountable.

“Building bridges and being the conscience of the justice system,” Coward-Holman says. “When we see something that’s wrong, we have to sound off and ring the bell. We have to speak up. We can no longer just sit back and act like these things didn’t happen.”

Tonight at 11, we will look at the Advisory Council that is in place to provide feedback to the sheriff. How much of Metro’s staff is African-American, and those officers’ ideas on how to improve the force.

NEXT: Metro’s Advisory Council, and the department’s racial makeup


State of Metro:

In a five-day series, 8NewsNow looks at reform in the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and the questions raised by Black Lives Matter protests.

The series:

Nov. 16: (overview): I-Team: Metro police face-to-face with racial tensions in Las Vegas
Nov. 16: I-Team: Examining how Metro stacks up when it comes to police reform policy changes
Nov. 16: State of Metro: By the numbers
Nov. 17: I-Team: Black police officers are in the middle as protests flare, challenges grow
Nov. 17: I-Team: Black police officers set national example for community service
Nov. 18: I-Team: Use of Force Board gives citizens an inside voice in Las Vegas police matters
Nov. 18: I-Team: 2019 death of Byron Williams brings attention to Metro policies on use of force
Nov. 19: I-Team: ‘We don’t use any virtual reality,’ Metro trains using real-life scenarios
Nov. 19: I-Team: Police hiring is crucial to building a force Las Vegas can trust
Nov. 20: I-Team: ‘There’s nobody that dislikes a bad cop more than a cop,’ sheriff says
Nov. 20: Deaths in police interactions, 2013-2020 — MAP
Nov. 20: I-Team: Metro reaction to police protests mirrors progress, willingness to change

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