Police union aims to oust judge who advised Black defendant to avoid cops

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A Las Vegas police union is calling for the resignation of a judge who advised a Black man to stay away from police.

The Las Vegas Police Protective Association (LVPPA) is urging that District Judge Erika Ballou leave her position on the bench after a video of her making “disparaging” remarks about law enforcement went viral, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

Ballou, a Black woman, told a defendant charged with committing battery against an officer that as a “Black man in America” he should’ve avoided the police encounter.

“You’re a Black man in America, you know you don’t want to be nowhere where cops are,” Ballou said during a court hearing earlier this month.

“You listen to me, you know you don’t want to be nowhere where cops are. Because I know I don’t, and I’m a middle-aged, middle-class Black woman. I don’t want to be around where the cops are because I don’t know if I’m going to walk away alive or not,” she continued.

LVPPA released a statement slamming Ballou’s comments.

“On behalf of the men and women of law enforcement, the Las Vegas Police Protective Association takes exception to Judge Erika Ballou’s disparaging comments about police officers,” the statement reads.

“We call upon Judge Ballou to resign from the bench. We also ask the Judicial Ethics Commission to sanction her for violating the Nevada Code of Judicial Conduct.”

According to the police union, Ballou’s “unethical and irresponsible” statements highlighted her bias against “law enforcement,” and therefore she “cannot live up to the standards required of a jurist.”

“Police officers and the law-abiding citizens of our community deserve better from the judiciary,” the organization’s statement concluded.

According to KTNV, NAACP Las Vegas released a statement in response to the backlash Ballou received from the police union.

The organization said Ballou’s comments “reflect the grim reality for African Americans.”

“People of color and African Americans, in particular, are disproportionately killed by police,” the NAACP’s statement reads in part.

“Nothing in Judge Ballou’s statements were untrue and the LVPPA’s position on this issue reflects its defensiveness based partly on the fact that the truth hurts.”

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