An interesting case out of New Jersey is getting a lot of attention because of a very peculiar reason. The case involves a former Bordentown Township Police Chief Frank Nucera Jr, who is on trial for a hate crime, among other charges, after he slammed a Black teenager’s face into a doorjamb during an arrest.
Because the 62 year old Nucera is charged with a hate crime, it is important for the prosecution to show that he harbors racial animus towards Blacks. It is against this backdrop that prosecutors have dug up comments attributed to him in 2016, prior to the U.S. presidential election.
Police chief accused of slamming black teen’s head into door: Trump is “last hope for white people” https://t.co/LHnETaYWga— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) September 28, 2019
Nucera, a Trump supporter, apparently said in 2016 that Trump was the “the last hope for white people.” Nucera specifically said, “I’m telling you, you know what, Donald Trump is the last hope for white people, cause Hillary (Clinton) will give it to all the minorities to get a vote…..That’s the truth! I’m telling you.”
Yours Truly will not go into the merits and demerits of the hate crime case laid out against Nucera. It is very noteworthy however that Nucera’s case yet again illustrates the fact that even in 2019, there are still people who occupy very high places in our criminal justice system who have very racist views.
The criminal justice system as we know, disproportionately affects poor people of color, especially Blacks. The racist comments Nucera made back in 2016 were probably well known by people in his department but nobody raised a finger. In other words, Nucera’s racial issues should have been addressed way before his unfortunate incident with the Black teenager. In the Washington Post article, prosecutors even allege that Nucera had a “significant history” of racist behavior and routinely referred to Blacks using the “n” word, which further proves Yours Truly’s point that people knew.
Bottom line folks, with every passing day we are being forced to confront reality and that is, there continues to be systemic racism in our criminal justice system. Our focus here, hard as it may seem, should not be to exact maximum punishment on former police chief Nucera but rather to address how someone like him with glaring racial issues even rose to become a police chief. Simply put, focus on the systemic racism in the criminal justice system rather than Nucera’s potential prison sentence.
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