By Crescenzo Vellucci
Vanguard Sacramento Bureau
SACRAMENTO – Caleb Macon is headed to jury trial here in mid-January, and faces years in jail after a simple traffic stop morphed into something much bigger – rather than just being cited, Macon was handcuffed, and arrested, along with his wife and brother.
Now Macon, who is Black, is charged with two counts of resisting arrest for delaying, resisting or obstructing a peace officer. Each count carries with it as much as one year in jail.
How did a simple traffic ticket escalate to multiple arrests, traumatized children and jury trial?
Black Lives Matter Sacramento maintains the Sacramento Police Dept. is at fault and is demanding
“systemic change” in the department in its treatment of Black residents.
BLM said Macon and his family, including his daughter, were “brutalized” by the Sacramento Police Dept. that evening in yet another example of the SPD’s targeting of Blacks in the community, noting the high number of Black men – including Stephon Clark, who was unarmed – killed by Sacramento city police or county sheriff’s deputies.
A dramatic video of the incident provided by “CopWatch” – and obtained by the Vanguard – appears to show SPD officers making the arrest of Caleb Macon, and then turning to arrest his wife and brother, all while a child cries in the background.
The video vividly shows the Black family confronted by more than a half dozen Sacramento Police Dept. officers at a traffic stop.
Initially, Caleb Macon, apologizing to police for asking them questions and maintaining his innocence, is handcuffed. Then his brother, checking the status of his sibling, is handcuffed and then police target Caleb’s wife Lashaun Royal, and arrest her – she also suffered a concussion and had her hair pulled out by SPD, said BLM. The family’s teen daughter is shoved to the ground.
“Caleb Macon was brutalized and arrested. His wife was brutalized and arrested. His brother was brutalized and arrested. His daughter was pushed to the ground while being traumatized,” said Tanya Faison, of BLM Sacramento at a news conference in front of the City of Sacramento’s City Hall recently.
Faison and BLM Sacramento released a list of demands, including a demand for all SPD audio and video, including body-cameras of the SPD officers involved, all video and audio of the Sacramento Sheriff’s department’s officers and helicopter and the names of all the officers involved.
“We demand that the Sacramento Police Department stop terrorizing Black families that have members that are on, or have been on parole or probation (and) stop using infraction and misdemeanor stops to criminalize Black community that are in, and outside, predominately Black neighborhoods,” said Faison.
“Officers found to have engaged in abusive behavior towards Black people in the community they patrol should be immediately removed and barred from any further engagement in that community,” added Faison.
Faison also charges “SacPD officers (should) remain professional during interactions with the communities they police (and) stop using abusive language and tactics toward Black community members and when officers engaging in predatory behavior that is clearly without legal cause, that they be sanctioned (and) stop using retaliatory methods that intentionally keep Black community members in control of, and beholden to, the current criminal system.”
Black Lives Matter Sacramento is also asking that “when abuse and trauma has been inflicted on the members of families, particularly children, compensation should be provided for mental health treatment either directly funded by the Police Department or the City of Sacramento.”
Finally, Black Lives Matter Sacramento also demanded that all charges be dismissed “when the original arrest was never warranted…it’s a violation of Caleb’s civil rights.”