Dave Oral History Interview

Creator: Dave | Date: 2015-08-19
Collection: Righting the Record Oral History Project

This is what happened. A few days ago – I’m going to tell a recent story that got me in court today – I was getting off the transit. I had two brand-new passes and money but the RTA man, the RTA transit, whatever you call the guy – because I’m from out of state – decided that he wanted to pick me out the crowd to mess with. So he said, “Well, you don’t have your fare.” I showed him my cards and my money and my green card and he still got smart. As if he had a bone to pick with me or if he was just having a bad day, whatever the case may be, but he just pulled me to the side and started cussing at me. So I guess he was trying to dehumanize me because you don’t talk to anybody like that and expect no repercussions. So I got into it with him. And now they locked me up, you know, I gotta go to court. A couple years back the police jumped on me right here, right over there on 18th and Superior right there, for no reason. That’s where this scar on my forehead came from. They hit me with something. But these was black officers. I don’t understand why they hit me, you know, I wasn’t doing anything. We homeless, we standing around, you know, we don’t have anywhere to go. But they seemed to want to feed… and, uh, what’s the word…

                Egg you on, or provoke?

Right. The homeless here. Why would you mess with a bunch of people that ain’t got nothing or nowhere to go, that ain’t doing nothing? It doesn’t make any sense to me. They do what they want. They wanna fill they quotas and they think they can just do what they want to do to us. And nobody is gonna say anything. Thank God that y’all are here to say something. You know this going keep on going on and on and on. Thank God we stand up. Me myself, I feel that we should be armed just like them because they… I mean, I’ve been in some… I’m not from this state. No, but since I’ve been here, I’ve been [inaudible]. Hit my head, had my teeth kicked out by these people. You know. And then, when I tell the judge or I tell the lawyer, they don’t seem to care. All, all they want to do is put it on me, like I’m the bad guy. I’m just a guy trying to get somewhere to live and move my family down here and be cool. But I don’t understand why these officers are acting like this. It ain’t just the Cleveland police, it’s the RTA transit, it’s um, you know, [inaudible] it’s like everybody tripping. So I, we need to figure out what’s going to happen here because if you watch the news, kids getting killed is not gonna just go away. Now, you gonna agitate the people on and then you wanna bring the military in here, the police – you know what I’m saying – the martial law, but you gotta look at your officers first. They need better relations with the people in the streets.

                Yeah. Yeah. Thank you, Dave.

~ Dave, “Dave Oral History Interview,” A People's Archive of Police Violence in Cleveland, accessed May 30, 2017, http://archivingpoliceviolence.org/items/show/56.
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