Amid public conversation about the usefulness and acceptance of body cameras for police officers, one musician is hitting the road—on foot and bike, no less—to protest police brutality, honor its victims and advocate for reform.
Prohaize, an Atlanta-based musician, is at the front of a campaign from the recently-launched Justice Trail that is taking him on a running and cycling journey from Atlanta to New York City. Fifteen days in, Prohaize has already traversed the coastal American Southern states and Washington, D.C. and is now passing through Maryland, speaking along the way about the need for police reform. With a body camera strapped to Prohaize’s chest to document the journey, Justice Trail is particularly advocating for the use of body cameras and legislation that supports it.
"#JusticeTrail Day 12: Roughly 35 miles covered on foot. Today’s trail is dedicated to #JonathanFerrell. He was an unarmed man shot 8 times by Officer Randall Kerrick in North Carolina in 2013. The jury acquitted Officer Randall due to "lack of evidence." Justice Trail family: this is why we are working hard for the implementation of body cameras. Aside from their proven ability to reduce police’s use of force by 60%, body cameras also create transparency that can provide insights into exactly what happens during police encounters with people. Sometimes it’s the police officer’s lack of training and judgment. Other times, the victim may provoke the outcome. We cannot allow these cases to go undecided.. when it’s our story versus theirs, ‘you know how that should go.’ For those who are donating to the campaign via GoFundMe.com/JusticeTrail… I can not thank you enough! I love you all for the constant support and encouragement. Let’s GO!" – @Prohaize | : @schmutzcob
#JusticeTrail Day 15: 28 miles traveled on foot into #WashingtonDC & #Maryland. Our journey from #Atlanta to #NewYorkCity continues! We’ve enjoyed conversations with local residents about what can be done to prevent #PoliceBrutality. In countries like the UK, Japan, Australia and Germany, less than 6 people are killed by police officers each year. Police officers in the United States killed 1,106 citizens in 2014 alone. Justice Trail advocates for tangible solutions, such as body cameras, to help prevent these drastic numbers, and to help provide evidence that will hold responsible the police officers who do not exercise proper protocol. If you have already donated to our campaign via GoFundMe.com/JusticeTrail, thank you and welcome to the Justice Trail family. | : @SchmutzCOB
Prohaize is documenting the journey with stunning black-and-white photographs posted on Justice Trail’s Instagram page that offer valuable statistics about police violence and tributes to those killed by police.
Justice Trail’s promotional video for the campaign addresses the policy impact of body cameras, citing Department of Justice reports from Rialto, California, where body cameras helped reduce the number of citizen complaints against police by 90 percent. In addition, Justice Trail is soliciting $15,000 in donations via GoFundMe, which will go to three organizations—Campaign Zero (We The Protesters), It’s Bigger Than You and The Run for Justice—that work on ending police brutality. Those who donate will have access to the film created with the body camera footage.
Visit Justice Trail’s website to learn more about their work.