Mississippi Councilman Says Throw Rocks at Police Chasing Petty Crooks in Jackson

Ben Brumfield, CNN, January 2, 2016

A city councilman fed up with police from other counties racing after small-time crooks in his Jackson, Mississippi, neighborhood has called for residents to throw things at officers in pursuit.

Now, the governor and a county sheriff are threatening to have prosecutors investigate him over the suggestion.

Councilman Kenneth Stokes has a reputation of saying what he thinks and stirring controversy.

“Let’s get rocks; let’s get bricks, and let’s get bottles,”Stokes told CNN affiliate WJTV.”And we’ll start throwing them, and then they won’t come in here anymore.”

Kenneth Stokes

Kenneth Stokes

It was no one-off quip. Stokes repeated the suggestion to other local news outlets.

“When you have these police officers coming from other jurisdictions and they will not respect human life, then I said we should use rocks, bricks or bottles to try to get the message over: stop endangering our children,” Stokes told Jackson’s The Clarion-Ledger newspaper.

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Gov. Phil Bryant joined him with a similar statement on Facebook.

“This is nothing short of an outright assault upon all who wear the badge. I will be asking Attorney General Jim Hood to investigate whether Mr. Stokes’ remarks represent criminal threats against law enforcement officers,” he said.

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Stokes told local media that his comments were not a call to riots.

He said that he supports police, and that police from surrounding jurisdictions pursuing dangerous criminals such as armed robbers through Jackson is justified. But risking lives to chase people suspected of misdemeanors is not.

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