From the Sean Perryman for Lt. Governor campaign:
RELEASE: April 12th, 2021
Fairfax, VA – Candidate for Lt. Governor Sean Perryman laid out his agenda to end police brutality in Virginia on Monday. This comes in the wake of a newly available video showing an incident of police brutality in Windsor, as well as the shooting of Donovon Lynch by a police officer in Virginia Beach who turned off their body camera.
Army Lt. Caron Nazario was driving his new car home in December, 2020 when he was pulled over by Windsor police officers for failing to display plates, despite the fact he had temporary plates displayed in his rear windshield. Lt. Nazario stopped his vehicle at a gas station for what should have been an average traffic stop. What transpired instead was a horrifying incident of police brutality in which Lt. Nazario was threatened, harassed, pepper-sprayed, beaten, and ultimately coerced into silence about the incident.
“What happened to Lt. Nazario isn’t just wrong—it was a violent abuse of power,” said Perryman. “At one point in the body camera footage, Nazario is heard saying ‘I’m honestly afraid to get out of the car,’ to which officer Gutierrez replies ‘Yeah, you should be.’ I can only imagine the fear that this reply sent through Lt. Nazario.”
“Police violence isn’t theoretical for Black people in Virginia. Racial justice activists have been fighting for progressive change for years before we knew the names George Floyd, Donovon Lynch, or Lt. Caron Nazario. We know there is a better way to ensure public safety and protect our communities from both the harms of crime and police misconduct. I used my experience as an organizer on the ground as well as input from activists and advocates to put together proposals that I know will lead the Lt. Governor’s race in its potential impact.”
These proposals include:
- Reassigning duties like routine traffic stops, assisting the unhoused, and mental health crisis intervention to civil servants other than police.
- Continuing on the success of cannabis legalization by committing more money to the Cannabis Equity Reinvestment Fund and repealing laws that create new cannabis crimes, including crimes targeting Virginia’s youth.
- Defelonizing all drugs, so that addiction and drug dependence is treated as a public health crisis rather than a criminal matter that requires police intervention.
- Ending Qualified Immunity for police officers so Virginia’s law enforcement can be held accountable for their misconduct.
- Investing more in mental health, housing, and education rather than jails, prisons, and police.
- Empowering local Civilian Review Boards to guide local law enforcement policy and issue subpoenas.
- Rejecting calls for more funding for local police departments as a part of police reform efforts.
“People are rightfully outraged. They are tired of seeing the same images of violence against Black people on the news and social media. There’s a reason that last year saw the largest demonstrations for racial justice in history. We have an obligation to not only act, but act in a way that listens to harmed communities and has the courage to take on the status quo. I’m committed to fulfilling that obligation as Lt. Governor by putting together a winning coalition of Virginians who want to see change, now.”
Sean Perryman is President Emeritus of the Fairfax County Chapter of the NAACP, a technology public policy advocate, attorney, and former congressional investigator. If elected he would become one of the youngest Lt. Governors in Virginia history.
To learn more visit: perrymanforvirginia.com