Letter to the Editor: Bring D.C. to North Charleston

My name is Trojan Bell and I am writing this letter again in hopes that some outside influence from Washington, D.C. can look into the practices of the North Charleston Police Department (NCPD). In 2005 Sheriff Al Cannon asked for the NCPD to be investigated. The investigation by SLED turned out to be an assassination of my son’s character as well as his mother’s (regarding how she was living).

Can you imagine being in a house and you see a cross burning outside at 2:00AM and your house is surrounded by white people? This sounds like something from the 1950’s and 1960’s, but be alarmed people of color—this is still happening to us. They just all have badges and guns on their sides.

I prayed for outside help because the federal system in South Carolina is born and bred in South Carolina. So, everyone has something to lose. There is no accountability in the state federal system. I asked for help from Jim Clyburn in my son’s case in 2005 and no response was ever received by him until now.

My child went into police custody and came out dead. The paperwork said he was transported to the hospital with no heartbeat.

On October 31, 2019 at 1:46am I heard a loud noise that woke me up from sleeping beside my wife. I looked out the window and I saw three white men dressed in dark clothes with a flashlight. So, I grabbed my pistol and went to the front door dressed in only my underwear. When I saw that it was the police beating on my door I sat the pistol down, opened the door, stuck my head out and asked them what they wanted. She said they wanted to come in my house and look for a phone that was stolen out of a young lady’s car. She said that the phone had pinged to my address. I asked for a warrant to search my house at which point they got angry and asked me if I had something to hide. I told them that police killed my son in 2005 and I didn’t trust them, but I wanted them to leave so I gave Officer Lance my identification to eliminate me from their quest.

The second he got my ID Officer Lance became nasty and mean on my property. When I asked for my ID back he refused to give it to me. I got angry and went back into my house and told Officer Lance to place the ID back on the porch when he decided to give it back because he was on camera and I was going to report his abuse of power. Officer Lance took a small black book out of his back pocket, recorded information from my driver’s license and dropped it on my porch. He sat outside my house for 30 minutes before going next door to my neighbor’s house and beating on his back door. These police had my wife and little girl upset and afraid to sleep. My daughter had school the next morning. She never got back to sleep after seeing and hearing what the police did.

Until South Carolina gets some help from Washington, people of color will continue to be killed and abused by the only gang we have to fear and that them boys in blue.

In 1857 Chief Justice Roger B. Taney argued that when the Constitution was written, black people were slaves and therefore were not “the people” referenced in the “by the people, for the people” clause. In other words, black people were not citizens so they didn’t have the rights guaranteed by the Constitution. Only white people did and Taney won that argument in the Dred Scott case.

I don’t trust the police in America and I am veteran of the United States Army and a black man who served his country. The judicial system is joke when it comes to black people. We make up the largest percentage of inmates in the US prison system yet comprise less than 15% of the US population. It’s unjust.

There were four black people on my son’s jury—one was my neighbor—and they were all afraid to vote against the police. A judge explained that all my son needed was one vote. One vote. My lawyer was working against me. All the while he was setting me up to lose the case.

I tell you my brothers and sisters—we are all we got. When we come together we are stronger than ever and impenetrable.

I hope that someone who can do something will do something. Until then I am going to stand firm, strong and tall until God gives us the glory on earth.

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