NEW ORLEANS – The ACLU of Louisiana issued the following statement regarding body camera footage of Louisiana State Trooper Jacob Brown viciously attacking an unarmed Black man—Aaron Bowman—in May 2019. Brown exacted unnecessary, excessive force on Mr. Bowman, hitting him with a flashlight 18 times in 24 seconds. The video comes three months after the release of body camera footage showing the final moments leading up to Ronald Greene’s death, also at the hands of Louisiana State Police (LSP) officers from Troop F. In May 2021, the ACLU of Louisiana spoke to Mr. Bowman, along with the family of Ronald Greene, in a virtual event to amplify their calls for justice.
The statement should be attributed to Alanah Odoms, ACLU of Louisiana executive director.
Hardly three months after the footage of Ronald Greene’s killing was released, we have yet another tragic example of the rampant misconduct that has plagued Louisiana State Police for decades. The repugnant and unnecessary beating of Aaron Bowman—and countless Black people at the hands of this agency—confirms what we’ve known for too long: it is time for the federal government to intervene and put an end to LSP’s vile pattern of unconstitutional brutality against Black people.
The type of violence and corruption that Mr. Bowman has experienced is in line with a system of American policing that has harassed, brutalized, and murdered Black people since its inception, and it can no longer be swept aside. Aaron Bowman deserves justice, and our community members deserve transparency and accountability.
In the absence of federal oversight, LSP will continue to put Louisianans at risk of constitutional rights violations. Only an independent, top-to-bottom investigation can ferret out the root cause of LSP’s wrongdoing and develop accountability mechanisms that can ensure these officers no longer engage in discriminatory and unconstitutional policing practices. The ACLU of Louisiana will fight relentlessly alongside Mr. Bowman’s attorneys Donecia Banks-Miley and Ron Haley to help win justice for him. We will not rest until there is justice for Aaron Bowman, Ronald Greene, and all other known victims of violence at the hands of Louisiana State Police.