White police officers in Miami Beach, Fla. got exposed for using old mugshots of Black teens as targets at their gun range. According to NBC 6 News in Miami, the practice foiled when a Black female, Florida National Guard Sgt. Valerie Deant, visited the firearms training center where Miami police did target practice.
Deant immediately noticed that a 15-year-old mugshot of her brother, who was 18 at the time, was being used by the police for target practice. She also noticed that photos of other Black men were also used at the firearms training center.
Deant’s brother, now 33, was arrested 15 years ago for drag racing. He is now now a married man with kids. Deant was mortified and angered at the all-Black photos at the shooting range. But the police chief is justifying his decision to keep up the mugshots for target practice.
Chief J. Scott Dennis said the there would be no disciplinary action taken against the officers because the photos are used for facial recognition (whatever that is supposed to really mean).
The problem with using these mugshots, however, in addition to it being a blatantly racist act (there were no White mugshots used as target practice) is that the mug shots that are being used are old. Many of the individuals whose images are being pelted with bullets are now leading productive lives.