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This website contains a sampling of my journalistic work and media appearances. I hope you see something you like.

Killed but not forgotten

Killed but not forgotten

Mic Dispatch | Aired throughout five-month run of show

Reporting by Aaron Morrison | Cinematography by Tarek Turkey

NOTE: “Killed but not forgotten” was a series I pitched to Mic, as way to go beyond headlines and examine the toll that police violence has taken on American families. The idea was to highlight what happens when news cameras go away, leaving families to grapple with paralyzing grief and financial hardships, one, two and five years after their loved ones were taken.

DESMOND PHILLIPS (Aired Aug. 2, 2018)

CHICO, Calif. — David Phillips Sr. is afraid to move out of the Chico, California, apartment where police officers fatally shot his 25-year-old son, Desmond Phillips, last year.

David Phillips called 911 the night of March 17, 2017, telling dispatchers that Desmond was having mental health “episode” and had at one point picked up some kitchen knives.

More than a year later, David Phillips refuses to patch up the spots where bullet holes are still visible on the walls. He doesn’t want evidence of the officers’ alleged negligence erased.

“I haven’t moved anything because I don’t know if or when investigators are going to come and want to see it,” David Phillips said in a sit-down interview in his living room in April. “This stays here at all times,” he added, pointing to a black toolbox that was pierced by an officer’s bullet.

Thursday’s episode of Mic Dispatch explores the fateful night last spring when, rather than supplying treatment for what David Phillips says was post-traumatic stress disorder, officers with the Chico Police Department used a stun gun on Desmond Phillips and then shot him at least 10 times, killing him.

The officers’ actions have already been ruled “justified“ — the Butte County District Attorney’s Office said the officers saved themselves, David Phillips and his nephews from a potentially lethal knife attack by Desmond Phillips.

To read the full written story, click here.

TYLER GEBHARD (Aired Aug. 21, 2018)

ST. LOUIS — Marlene Gebhard comes from a family of police officers, but her trust in law enforcement was betrayed when an off-duty officer shot and killed her black biracial grandson, Tyler Gebhard, in Lakeshire, Missouri, two summers ago.

According to the St. Louis County Police Department, Tyler Gebhard entered the home of Officer Joshua Lasley’s in-laws without permission on July 9, 2016. The 20-year-old reportedly made odd statements and lunged threateningly at Lasley, who had a firearm. Authorities concluded Lasley shot Gebhard to protect his wife and young children, who were hiding in another room.

The alleged intruder was unarmed when he was killed. The shooting has forced Marlene Gebhard to re-evaluate her once-skeptical views on racial bias in policing.

“Racism exists and the criminal justice system is not going to protect all families,” she says in Tuesday’s episode of Mic Dispatch. “I have experienced it. I am a white person of privilege, but if I couldn’t get justice, who can?”

Marlene Gebhard, her husband Larry Gebhard and Tyler Gebhard’s mother, Angela Johnson, have spent the two years since the shooting seeking accountability for Tyler Gebhard’s death. They’ve had little success. The office of St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch complicated matters by redacting the full names of Lasley and other witnesses in the house from their initial case report.

To read the full written story, click here.

TYRONE WEST (Aired Sept. 12, 2018)

BALTIMORE — It’s been over five years since Tyrone West’s scuffle with Baltimore police ended with his in-custody death. And his sister, Tawanda Jones, hasn't stopped leading weekly vigils calling for the officers involved to be held accountable.

Jones often shouts a refrain over a loudspeaker at “West Wednesdays,” the vigils she holds at busy intersections or outside government buildings to draw attention to her brother’s case and to other cases of police violence: “We won’t stop, we can’t stop, until killer cops are in cell blocks!”

West, who was pulled over by police July 18, 2013, allegedly resisted arrest after officers started to suspect he had drugs on him, authorities said. Eight officers were eventually needed to restrain West. According to the Independent Review Board that investigated the case, the Maryland Office of the Medical Examiner concluded West’s heart stopped due to dehydration, exertion and “physical excitement.”

Jones and her family disputed that conclusion, ordering their own autopsy that determined West’s death was caused by asphyxiation while under police restraint. Law enforcement falsely painted West as a drug offender with bad health, his sister said.

In December 2013, the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office cleared police of wrongdoing and declined to seek criminal charges. Although West’s family accepted $1 million to settle a wrongful death lawsuit — the agreement stipulated the family refrain from discussing the case publicly — Jones was not party to it.

“I’m obligated not just to fight for my brother because these are not isolated incidents,” Jones said on Tuesday’s episode of Mic Dispatch, “I know after two days, some families can’t even stand this fight. We have to be the one to keep that light constantly burning.”

To read the full written story, click here.

The Hope and Redemption Tour with Common

The Hope and Redemption Tour with Common

The Shaun King interview

The Shaun King interview