Barbara Lee supports OPD probe of BART shooting

Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, issued this statement tonight, hours after Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums declared that the Oakland Police Department will join the Alameda County District Attorney‘s office in investigating the shooting death of Oscar Grant III, 22, of Hayward, who died after being shot by a BART police officer while at the Fruitvale BART station in the wee hours of New Year’s Day:

“My thoughts and prayers are with the family of Oscar Grant as they grieve the loss of their loved one. They deserve our support and assistance during this difficult period.

“I am pleased to learn that the Oakland Police Department is being brought in to conduct an independent, third-party investigation of this horrific incident. Hopefully, the Oakland Police Department will conduct a swift and thorough investigation into Oscar’s tragic death. I have communicated with Mayor Ron Dellums and the family’s attorney John Burris to offer my assistance.

“Our community is rightfully outraged by this deplorable act. We have a duty and a right to peacefully protest in an effort to seek justice. However in Oscar’s memory, let us not create more violence. Rather, we should continue to exercise our right to assemble peacefully as we seek answers to this deplorable act. We should also continue to insist that the investigation into the shooting be thorough and expeditious.”

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • I have no doubt that folks are doing things to get this issue resolved, but I think they should really be assessing what is creating the uproar in the community rather than merely disavowing it. People aren’t just angry about Oscar’s passing, but I think his passing is symbolically the straw that broke the camel’s back.

    I can’t help but imagine that the inauguration of our nations first black president might have something to do with raised tensions on all sides of this equation.

    Mayor Dellums rightfully has inserted Oakland, but could have done a better job of communicating the meaning of his efforts to an already rowdy and displeased crowd last night [http://tr.im/blktoakrioit].

  • bernie quigley

    Chip Johnston (of the Chronicle) has been outstanding in his coverage of Oakland. Honestly, I think he desrves a Pulitzer. He’s really a couarageous journalist. He nailed it in today’s comments about the reaction to the BART killing. He said the outrage was ill directed and why not similar outrage over the 127 youth killed by the gang bangers in recent months. The little boy paralyzed while taking piano lessons was particularly sad. Dellums is a pompous fool and has done a miserable job in addressing the problems of Oakland, not least crime and murder. He deserves to be impeached. Oh, and the Directors of the BART doing their mea culpa theatre for the media yesterday was particularly ridiculous and shameful

  • RR

    Barbara Lee could be justifiably outraged that her mentor, Mayor Dellums, is a bad joke played on the residents of Oakland. As for Rep. Lee, if she wants to meddle in this incident she should resign from the House and re-enter local politics.

  • bernie quigley

    With all of the extraordinarily smart and capable people who live in the Bay Area, how is it such mediocrities get elected to represent us in Sacramento and Washington?