#DefendBre – Support Breonna “Bre” Bell.
I’m Gareth Fenley in Monroe, Georgia. I visited Bre yesterday in jail. June 5. You may have seen Bre on video, made on May 9 at the worst moments of her life.
Bre is held without bail on a FELONY charge of CRUELTY TO CHILDREN. Why? Because, while a police officer was grabbing her, her baby fell from her arm.
Bre had called 911 asking for help to unlock her car on May 9. She called from Nelson Heights, a predominantly African American neighborhood in Covington, Georgia. Bre and her baby son, her family, and other people with her that day are African American.
Officer Mosley of the city police force arrived. He is white.
Mosley had checked his database and found an electronic record that Bre had violated probation.
Mosley told Bre he was taking her to jail. Bre said no. Mosley grabbed Bre and she struggled, holding her 8-month-old son with his baby bottle of milk.
Mosley pulled on Bre’s arm. The baby fell on the pavement and Bre picked him up. Then a friend took the baby.
Mosley wrestled Bre face down to the street. She was naked from the waist down with pants at her ankles.
By then, 4 more Covington Police officers had arrived. They all are white. They put handcuffs on Bre. They put her in the back of a police car.
They drove her to the back of a parking lot. Back by the woods. Bre was terrified for her son, and for her own life.
They jailed Bre and charged her with cruelty to children. A felony.
Bre is still locked up today in the Newton County jail, 29 days after arrest, without bail. Because of that felony charge. Cruelty to children. The probation violation charge was dismissed.
Before 29 days ago, Bre had just been getting her life together. She had gotten a good job. Her own place to call home. The keys to her own car.
Then she left those keys in that car. The car door closed. And she called the police. For help.
We can help Bre. You can help Bre.
Bre and her family have no money for an attorney. She needs a strong one. We can get one.
The media was all over this. For a little while. Bre’s case went viral and it went national.
And Bre is still locked up. It’s been 29 days. Newton County is
pressing the felony charge. The Covington Police department officially says
that everything done to Bre during the arrest was within department policy.
They admitted Bre was half naked when they forced her down, face on the pavement. They called it a “wardrobe malfunction.”
That’s right. In a written statement, the Covington, Georgia police force said it was a “wardrobe malfunction.”
The Covington police said in another statement to the media: “Looking into the video and talking to those present, the officer did not violate policy.”
That’s right. They said their officer “did not violate policy.”
Bre’s prosecution was just this week handed up from probate to Superior Court.
As I said, I met Bre yesterday in the Newton County jail.
Bre asked me to call her mother, and her cousin, and a community advocate, Denise Williams.
We acted fast. We met each other and others defending Bre. We have sat together, we’ve talked, we’ve laughed, we’ve planned, and we are dead serious to #DefendBre.
We have found the right attorney for Bre. Somebody known as the fiercest fighter for justice in the county.
I can’t say who it is, this minute.
We need money to #DefendBre. We have committed ourselves to get that money. It’s 35-hundred dollars. To start.
As I write this, we are meeting the attorney in 5 hours. This afternoon in downtown Covington, Georgia.
I’m asking you, right now, to help Bre’s mother, and Bre’s community, and me, to #DefendBre. Go to this web site and donate by Pay Pal.
It’s the web site of the Newton County chapter of the National Action Network. It’s N-A-N-Newton-Co-Chapter dot org. This is an IRS accredited, State of Georgia certified, nonprofit corporation. The national organization was founded in 1991.
The Newton County chapter was founded in 2015 by a man named Archie Shepherd. You can see his photo and bio on the web site.
I know Archie personally. And I’ve been knowing him, not just for a couple of days. Archie Shepherd is the real deal. You might have seen him on TV, speaking up to #DefendBre.
Now I’m wrapping up. There’s a lot more to the story. And some of the details are being picked out by right-wing racists, and distorted into a conspiracy theory. These racists are spreading the garbage story that Bre herself rigged up her own arrest and tossed her 8-month-old baby on the street to set up a fake political showdown.
Yes, really. Bre’s mother is getting anonymous hate messages on her cell phone.
I’ve got to go now. There’s not a lot of time to say more. I need your help. Let’s #DefendBre. Use this web site to donate now.
I’m Gareth Fenley in Monroe, Georgia.