ON November 3, 2015_The United Nations will host a historical special event called “Confronting the Silence: Perspectives and Dialogue on Structural Racism against People of African Descent Worldwide. ” Present including the Keynote Speaker Harry Belafonte amongst the list of invited special guest by organizers will be the family of Andrew Joseph. While the case of Joseph at this point is not widely known in American Circles the case definitely should be and will be highlighted as one of the most infamous cases of Police brutality that exist.
The Joseph’s moved from New Orleans to Riverview in 2006, “hoping for a better life” after Hurricane Katrina. They are healthcare professionals and both of their children, Andrew and their 10-year-old daughter, were star students, they said. Andrew was an honor student at St. Stephen Catholic School in Riverview and a player on the Brandon Ravens youth football team, his parents said. Andrew had just been accepted to Tampa Catholic High School. His whole name was Andrew Joseph, III he was killed at 14 years old in Tampa, FL on Feb 7, 2014.
Andrew attended a Hillsborough County School Districts event named “Student Day” at the Florida State Fairgrounds the Hillsborough County. That day chaos at the fair came during an apparent underground tradition called “wilding,” which deputies at the time said usually occurs on Student Day, when Hillsborough County students are admitted to the event for free. Law enforcement officials said most of the young people who typically participate in the melee are black and that the behavior has ties in gang membership.
In Andrews case sheriff deputies detained (arrested) him, stripped him, photographed him and loaded him into a sheriff patty wagon, transported him, then abandoned him to a dark road, Later that night, Joseph got a call from the neighbor saying the fair had been shut down and that she couldn’t find Andrew. Tragically the family would learn that the child was abandoned by the police to a dark road facing the I-4 interstate, where he(Andrew) was killed after being stuck by an oncoming SUV.
This section of Interstate-four known to locals as the “Dead Zone.” This short span of asphalt, in Seminole county, at the south end of the interstate bridge across the St. Johns River, has become known for its high number of traffic accidents. Depending on sources, there have been an estimated 1,048 to 1,740 car crashes at this location since the highway was opened in 1963 with a significant number involving fatalities. According to reports in 1995, there were 44 accidents which injured 65 motorists.
Sadly, Andrew Joseph, III a student and resident of Hillsborough County was offered no protection, no safety and no security and the ultimate fault lies on the two sheriff deputies who released Andrew, a move that was no way near what their protocols dictate. Still no actions or reprimands for the deputies who put hands on this child have been reported in the death of child in the custodial care of the sheriff department. In Hillsborough County there has not been a whisper.
According to a recent interview from the Tampa Bay Times- Sheriff’s office spokesman Larry McKinnon said the sheriff’s office doesn’t comment on pending lawsuits.“We’ll take all the facts of their lawsuit and review them and then deal with them appropriately in the courts,” McKinnon said.
Chuck Pesano, executive director of the Florida State Fair Authority, also said he could not comment on pending litigation.
“This was a really good kid,” said Barry Cohen, the family’s attorney. “This wasn’t some thug.” After Andrew was killed, authorities and the media painted him to look like a gang member who was committing violence at the fair, Joseph said. He said people assumed Andrew was a “throwaway kid” with irresponsible parents who didn’t care.
The real issue of this case is why was our kid illegally detained, illegally transported and abandoned without notification to anybody?” Andrew Father-Joseph explained. “Those are the real facts of this case that have not even been addressed by anybody involved.”
On the occasion of the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights invites, with the co-sponsorship of the Unitarian Universalist Association, the United Nations Department of Public Information, UNESCO, the Organisation de la Francophonie (tbc), A Black Lives Matters Initiative, and Amnesty International USA, to host a special event on Confronting the Silence: Perspectives and Dialogue on Structural Racism against People of African Descent Worldwide Tuesday, 3 November 2015 UN Secretariat Conference Building, United Nations Headquarters, NYC-ECOSOC Chamber 1.30 p.m. – 4.30 p.m.
For more information on the Andrew Joseph Story go to the Andrewjosephfoundation.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on the United Nations Event use the link below