Attorney Ben Crump has become a household name as the go-to lawyer for families impacted by police violence, including those of Michael Brown, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Jacob Blake and many others.
Crump may be the most notable civil rights attorney in the country, spending the last decade taking on high profile cases of not just police using excessive force, but other violations of civil rights. Despite all of his work, Crump says there’s more work to be done. He was in Chicago Tuesday calling for federal police reform.
“Obviously we need meaningful police reform that will hopefully slow down some of these hashtags that are happening far too soon,” said Crump. “I mean we have far too many young people of color being killed by the very people who are supposed to protect and serve them.”
Crump says he thought the murder of George Floyd would lead to federal police reform in the U.S. The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act has been stalled in the U.S. Senate after being approved by the House of Representatives in March of last year.
“We’re so polarized in this nation that even common sense legislation like banning chokeholds, like banning no knock warrants that led to the death of Breonna Taylor. Like having a federal police registry of who the police are killing so we can just keep track of it,” said Crump. “They won’t even vote on that because they don’t want anybody from the other side to get any credit from doing important work passing important legislation. And so it’s really sad in America, but that’s why elections matter. We have to fight with everything. We have to give our Children a better world, a better America.”
Crump has spent his career focused on families impacted by police brutality and excessive use of force, either by police or citizens taking matters into their own hands. He represented Trayvon Martin’s family after he was killed by George Zimmerman in 2012 and says that case changed him as a lawyer and as a man.