I haven’t blogged lately because nothing has been on my mind enough to write about, until a few days ago when the Bakersfield Police Department killed Jason Alderman.
With all due respect, Jason Alderman was most likely involved in a burglary in progress at a Subway store after it had closed. However, I firmly believe in due process and because of the excessive force often used by local police, it bothers me that this guy was shot on the spot. Jason Alderman should be in jail, not at the morgue.
I have spoken to many local families who have lost loved ones to unnecessary and unlawful police killing. James Moore was beaten to death by many officers as was David Siva. David Turner, Jorge Ramirez and Justin Harger were also gunned down by local police for no good reason. The mentality of police in my town is “Shoot first, ask questions and cover it up later”. The blue line is very thick, no officer goes against the story of another officer, they cover for each other like second nature, it’s a lifestyle. Again, I’m not just spewing out opinions, this is what I have experienced being involved with local activists etc… The stories I could tell wouldn’t even be believed, so to spare my credibility I will withhold those for now.
I heard about the killing of Jason Alderman and I chose to stay quiet on social media until I heard the full story. Well, after reading the news articles and seeing a facebook post from a Subway employee that immediately contradicted the police story it piqued my curiosity. Again, it matters not to me that he was a criminal, he was not armed, he was not threatening anyone’s life, including the police officers. He was burglarizing Subway, after hours with no employees present, he was not robbing anyone at gunpoint.
The police who responded to the incident were in the parking lot and seen broken glass in front of Subway and supposedly, a white BMW backed up to the front door. Upon closer observation they seen a man inside with a mask over his head and he refused to drop his weapon, which was not immediately disclosed what the weapon was. Officer Chad Garrett, (referred to as a Sr. officer although he has only been a cop for 4 years), shot him on the spot and killed him, this is Officer Garrett’s third killing that we know of. The immediate story was that the Subway video cameras were not rolling and no video was available. Then a Subway employee posts on her Facebook page that there was actually video footage and that BPD confiscated it on the spot. Still, BPD claimed not to know of any video.
I went to Subway this morning to contribute to the memorial set up by his family out front and also do some chalking to support the family because this is just my passion, its my journey. When i was there I met Jason Alderman’s sister, she was grieving, it was horrible. She claimed that the police department had the original video and then came back yesterday to confiscate the hard drive of the surveillance equipment. She also said that her brother’s car would not go in reverse because it had mechanical problems. She also told me that she knew for a fact that he had loaned out his BMW car jack to a friend and it wasn’t in his possession
Well, the police department has updated their report today claiming the weapon was his BMW car jack, that does look like a gun in all honesty AND they claim they now have video footage of the incident. However, his sister claims that is not his car jack, so who knows where the police came up with this. In past police killings the Bakersfield Police Department has confiscated video and then claimed it was accidentally deleted and/or was damaged. Therefore, I do not believe we will ever see the real video of the shooting. Jason Alderman was 29 years old and obviously having rough times, he was burglarizing Subway, but, now he is dead.
Both of the officer’s that came across this crime in progress have killed before, senselessly, that part bothers me. The stories that change daily, that bothers me. The fact that I talked to Jason’s sister and her stories are completely different, that bothers me. The police should just be honest, tell the truth and give the family closure and peace. But, instead they lie, confiscate and delete videos and treat the families like trash calling their loved one a criminal. It’s more how they act after they kill that bother’s me the most. I once heard an officer tell the brother of someone he beat to death, “I did this town a favor by taking out your brother”, that is sickness. That bother’s me. Jason Alderman was denied due process and that is not what the United States was founded on. What happened to innocent until proven guilty?