Take action on police brutality

Many of you probably are already aware of the controversy surrounding the shooting of Andy Lopez, but if not I will explain the situation briefly before expressing my feelings on the matter.
Officer Erick Gelhaus allegedly mistook the toy rifle 13-year-old Lopez was holding for a real weapon and discharged his firearm multiple times in Lopez’s direction, fatally wounding him. The shooting has been the cause of many protests in Santa Rosa in recent weeks.
As reported by Police Lt. Paul Henry, two Sonoma County officers were patrolling the Moorland Avenue neighborhood when they spotted Lopez, who was carrying what was believed to be a real firearm, Lopez was traveling down Moorland from his family’s house to go visit a friend while carrying an airsoft replica of an AK-47 assault rifle.
The sheriff’s deputies reportedly demanded Lopez drop the weapon, and one of the two deputies remained in the car while the other exited the vehicle and directly engaged Lopez at 3:14 p.m. His back was reportedly facing them, but as they ordered him to put down the weapon they said he turned toward them. Gelhaus fired at least eight, possibly more, shots at Lopez from his 9 mm pistol. Seven bullets hit Lopez within six seconds, then deputies handcuffed Lopez and he was pronounced dead on the scene.
Two women who claim to have witnessed Lopez’s shooting say that deputies only shouted once before opening fire on him and Gelhaus, reportedly stated he does not remember if he identified himself as a police officer before discharging his firearm.
Many members of Lopez’s local community have come to his support. Nicole Guerra, whose son was a friend of Lopez was reported to have said about him, “He wanted to go to college and do something with his life.
He would not have resisted. No way, no way. He’s not that kind of boy.”
It is my opinion that something needs to be done, not just about this shooting in particular, but about police brutality and excessive use of force by police in general. Every year many young men and women are killed when police use excessive force. Stories like these are sometimes not even covered widely and many times the officer gets off scot-free unless the federal government steps in to investigate, as often times the investigations are conducted by the same police force that the offending officer was employed by.
Just recently, on Monday, Nov. 4, another teen was shot and fatally wounded by police. Tyler Comstock, 19, of Boone, Iowa had just gotten into an argument with his dad because he did not want to drive him to go get cigarettes. Tyler took the car, and his dad, to teach him a lesson called the police and reported the car stolen. Comstock reportedly refused to stop the vehicle and when the police finally did get the vehicle to come to a full halt police officer Adam McPherson fired six shots into the vehicle, two of them striking Comstock and killing him.
Something needs to be done on a large scale. The police department in Rialto, California put cameras on a group of officers and the community saw citizen complaints toward police drop 88 percent, and use of force declined by 59 percent. Systems like this may or may not work when scaled up but we will never know unless we give them a try.
We need to better our current law enforcement agencies for ourselves, our families, our friends, and for the future generations of this nation.
Police forces are meant to help people but it seems in many communities they are doing the exact opposite.