2012-06-14 / Other News

Residents March To 69th Precinct For Tamon Robinson

Photos and text by Sam Akhtar

Crowd rallys in streets Crowd rallys in streets Chants of “No justice, no peace! No justice, no peace!” resonated along Rockaway Parkway last Saturday as the march for Tamon Robinson began around noon at the Bayview Houses complex and culminated at the 69th Precinct on Foster Avenue. Residents were rallying to protest Robinson’s death in April after he was struck by a police vehicle.

Responding to a call of someone stealing cobblestones, a patrol car from the local precinct chased and struck Robinson, 27, reports said. The Bayview Houses resident sustained major injuries resulting in his death a week later.

Sanford Rubenstein, the attorney for the family, told the Canarsie Courier, “We are awaiting the investigation that is underway by the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office of the criminality of the police officer. We want a grand jury impaneled to review the wrongful death of Tamon Robinson. Clearly, the physical evidence doesn’t match up with how this happened.”

Laverne Dobbinson, mother of the deceased, received an outpouring of support from those in attendance. When asked if she felt the story of her son’s death was forgotten, Ms. Dobbinson looked around and said, “It’s still fresh in people’s minds in this area.”

Even the parents of Ramarley Graham, the unarmed Bronx teen who was shot and killed by police in The Bronx in February, attended the gathering of support. It was noted that Police Officer Richard Haste, 30, was indicted and facing manslaughter charges this week in that case.

Also in attendance were representatives of the National Action Network, including National Executive Director Tamika D. Mallory and Executive Vice-President and Legal Counsel Michael A. Harvey.

Mallory adamantly stated her support for Ms. Dobbinson by saying, “We are out here for you. We are standing for your family.”

She continued to implore activism from the community in the face of the tragedy. “Tomorrow it could be you,” she declared as she acknowledged and thanked Graham’s parents.

Councilman Charles Barron decried the tragedy by saying, “Children are supposed to bury their parents, not parents burying their children. Something’s wrong with that.”

Once organized, the banner-carrying protestors progressed in unison towards the precinct station house. The two mile march seemed to garner more supporters even as the overcast afternoon produced a few sprinkles. Undeterred, the crowd moved forward as they continued alternating chants, only stopping at intersections to allow the group to re-gather. Along the way, pedestrians were handed flyers and cars stopped to gawk at the crowd as they made their way.

Andre T. Mitchell, Executive Director of Man Up Inc., rallied the protestors as they congregated in front of the police station. The energized crowd renewed their calls for accountability as Councilman Barron was steadfast and unapologetic in his demands for action. Mr. Rubenstein took to the bull horn and emphatically reiterated his stance that “the physical evidence did not match up with the police report.” Robinson’s mother delivered a short, tearful call for justice for her son.

As the nearly two-hour event wound down, people gathered to once again offer their condolences to Ms. Dobbinson. Relatives of the young man said he didn’t deserve such an untimely death. John Torrence, granduncle of Robinson said, “Tamon was always in good spirits.” Joe Hayes, a tenant of the Bayview Houses for about twelve years summarized that the community would “not stand for this,” as the pledge to seek justice for Tamon Robinson continued.

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