Controversial antiracism and police reform activist Shaun King says he’s uncovered a conspiracy among former law enforcement officials to murder him, the Los Angeles Times reports.
In a Medium post last week, King says he found onetime officers from Long Beach P.D. and other agencies chatting on Facebook about wanting to see him dead. “Inside of a private Facebook group for California Law Enforcement Officers, members of the group were openly plotting and planning my assassination,” King wrote. “Sadly, I receive death threats daily. It’s been that for years, but they are mainly from anonymous strangers and seem more designed to intimidate me and my family than they appear to be imminent threats of physical harm.”
However, King says the members of the Facebook group were “altogether different. These were men and women, in a private group that they had no idea I’d ever see, using their real names and identities, openly plotting to kill me and organizing each other to execute it.”
A Facebook user alleged to be former Long Beach police officer Laura Tartaglione seems to have introduced the subject, calling King a founding member of Black Lives Matter, mentioning his outspoken support of Bernie Sanders for president, and adding, “I think Calif needs to start putting a team together of retired military, police, and NRA MEMBERS! We have no protection. These criminals that the Democrats created need to be stopped.”
An account associated with a person named Roy Brokaw responds, “I’m with you brothers and sisters for justice. And I’ll be there. Tell me when and where. Does anyone know where this Shaun King can be found?”
A man identifying himself as John Houchens posted, “Shaun King needs to be put down,” while someone named Chris Sanford suggested, “Toss this guy from a helicopter.”
Jerry DeRosa, believed to have served with multiple agencies, said simply, “Need a sniper.”
A person believed to be retired Long Beach Police Officer Jeffrey Garcia posted, “I am ready to rock and roll—let’s get it going boys and girls.”
Tartaglione replied, “organize it,” to which Garcia responded, “Roger that, Laura.”
Tartaglione—who did not return a Times call for comment—runs a nonprofit called Honorbands, which raises money to honor officers killed in the line of duty, while financial records reveal that a Roy Brokaw was a member of the Inglewood Police Department for nearly 29 years before retiring in 2002, though IPD issued a statement saying they could not confirm that the Brokaw in the murder discussion was the same man.
Long Beach P.D. did confirm that two of its former officers were involved in the chat, and said that the department would request FBI assistance in their investigation.
Yes, I think the statues of the white European they claim is Jesus should also come down.
They are a form of white supremacy.
Always have been.
In the Bible, when the family of Jesus wanted to hide, and blend in, guess where they went?
Tear them down.
— Shaun King (@shaunking) June 22, 2020
King recently made himself even less popular with the right wing when he tweeted that all statues depicting Jesus as a white European should be torn down, along with statues George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, slave owners who King called “despicable human beings. Monsters.”
But he’s also lost favor with some former allies and supporters over accusations that he’s raised tons of money for projects and campaigns that go nowhere, or that he promptly abandons, without ever properly accounting for the cash he raised.
Regarding the former cops’ “incredibly disturbing social media messages,” LBPD said in a statement, “We are 100% committed to working in partnership with our community to ensure that all people are treated with respect and professionalism and will not tolerate any bias, racism or threats to individuals.”