LAPD officer makes plea to LeBron James after NBA star’s controversial tweet
Officer Deon Joseph on Facebook asked LeBron James to sit down with him so that they can talk about the realities of policing
By Police1 Staff
LOS ANGELES — An LAPD officer took to Facebook on Sunday to write an open letter to Lakers star LeBron James. In the wake of a controversial tweet by James, Officer Deon Joseph asked to sit down and have a conversation with the NBA player about policing.
The request came after James posted a now-deleted tweet about the police shooting of Ma’Khia Bryant in Columbus, Ohio. In the tweet, James posted a photo of the officer believed to have shot Bryant as she attacked someone with a knife, with the caption, “YOU’RE NEXT #ACCOUNTABILITY”. The text is an apparent reference to Derek Chauvin’s recent guilty verdict.
Joseph starts the letter by saying, “I am not going to come at you from a place of hatred. There will be no name-calling.”
He continued, “But your current stance on policing is so off base and extreme. Your tweet that targeted a police officer in Ohio who saved a young woman’s life was irresponsible and disturbing. It showed a complete lack of understanding of the challenge of our job in the heat of a moment. You basically put a target on the back of a human being who had to make a split-second decision to save a life from a deadly attack.”
Joseph ends his letter with an offer to sit down and have an open conversation with James.
“I think if you yourself actually sat down and had a real honest and open conversation with a cop, there is a strong chance you may discover we are not the monsters you have come to believe we are,” he wrote. “No cameras. No fanfare. Just two men who care talking. I know it’s a long shot. But this division and hatred must stop.”
James has not responded to the letter as of Tuesday morning.
I’m so damn tired of seeing Black people killed by police. I took the tweet down because its being used to create more hate -This isn’t about one officer. it’s about the entire system and they always use our words to create more racism. I am so desperate for more ACCOUNTABILITY— LeBron James (@KingJames) April 21, 2021