Eunice Barber sentenced in France

2 December 2008 at 00:27 | 4745 views

Sent in by Brima Conteh, Paris, France.

On Wednesday November 26th, two months of imprisonment were handed down by the prosecutor of Bobigny (Seine-Saint-Denis) against Eunice Barber, the world long jump and heptathlon champion , prosecuted for "refusal to submitt to the forces in order" during an interpellation in March 2006 in Saint-Denis. (cf video of the group page).

Eunice was victim of a particularly tough arrest by the police near the Stade de France on March 18th, 2006 (cf video on the page).

Brutalized by the police, Eunice defended herself as best as she c ould, facing 6 police men and women in helmets and boots. This armed force of police dragged her by the hair, and forced to stay on the ground while they kept their feet on her back and arms while dragging her to the police station, where she stayed 48 hours in police custody.

Eunice Barber who had seized the IGS (Police Internal Affairs), did not see her complaint for aggravated assault taken into account(...) Her complaint has been ignored.

Eunice and only Eunice is facing charges, as the police, following her charges against them, fired back with charges against the world champion for viloence against the forces of the law as well as bringing danger to the lives of...???

She was accused of brutalising the agents, as she bit two of them, and in particular she was accused of trying to escape while an agent was half way in her car an dshe SUPPOSEDLY would have dragged the officer for several meters.

There are videos that were taken at the scene by observers as well as the video in the parking lot where this all happened so no lies can be hidden...showing that Eunice has only told the truth, the police on the other hand have lied yet only Eunice is facing charges!

. We have formed this group to protest against police brutatlity, to fully support Eunice Barber in her quest to reclaim the dignity she deserves, and in particular because the law is made to be followed and was made to protect us by those who are intended to represent t he law. The police.

. Because our police need to find their due respect and because for each injustice they commit, our peace and feeling of safety seems to drift further away.

. We are French citizens, we live in France, our police are intended to be everyone’s police, to protect us all...yet the clichées we see here are an insult to our citizenship as well as our republic.

. We refuse to accept any form of violence commited against our citizens, no matter their origin, their ‘shade’ or color, or their postal address.

. We demand that our highest ministers of justice AND SECURITY unite to discuss and review this matter so that our representatives can find the needed path to find the respect and cooperation that are essential for a population to live in harmony with it’s representatives of the law. We no longer want to be stigmatized by the forces of the law of our country because of our color, ethnic origin, or the neighborhood we live in. We no longer want an accusation to run rampid because an athlete is black and thus in the mind’s of our representatives of our laws this makes her violent?!

. Above all we find it unnecessary to mention the origins of a FRENCH plaintiff when mediatising such an affair.

If you have been a victim or witness of police brutality, no matter your origin or social status, you feel that Eunice’s story hits home. Eunice who is accused of being “one of those athletes who thinks her status makes her untouchable” and thus wont pay for her errors when in fact on the contrary she is speaking out for all of the errors comitted before her story, then come and join this group. Tell your story and leave your opinion. When we have the necessary number of signatures and witnesses we will bring this document to our elected officials.

Photo: Sierra Leonean born Eunice Barber.

Photo credit: Wikipedia.