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Standing In Power and the Decatur Community Demand Justice for Steve Perkins

MONTGOMERY — This week, Standing In Power (S.I.P.), in partnership with the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Alabama State Office, raised two billboards demanding justice for the death of Steve Perkins, who was senselessly killed by a Decatur police officer in front of his home in the early hours of Sept. 29. The billboards are located in Montgomery at 1424 Madison Avenue W/O Hopper (Google coordinates 32.38029401282953, -86.28884653558185) and E/S I-65 Herron Street exit F/S (see image below).

“The murder of Stephen Clay Perkins is a reminder of how broken the American legal system is. His death was a slap in the face to the Black community as if our lives aren't valued,” says Adrianna Tapscott, co-founder of S.I.P. “However, his murder will serve as a flashlight, exposing the darkness that travels beyond generations. Had it not been for Steve’s neighbors, the Decatur community and the world would have been left to believe the lies of a narrative that has been echoed for over 400 years.”

“The death of Steve Perkins, allegedly at the hands of the Decatur Police Department, is an absolute tragedy that should never have occurred. His life was abruptly taken away, leaving a void that can never be filled. We must demand justice for Steve Perkins and hold those responsible accountable, ensuring that this type of violence is eradicated from our communities,” says S.I.P. co-founder Aneesah Lige. “Let us remember Steve as the victim of a broken legal system and work tirelessly to create a future where everyone is treated with dignity, respect, and the right to live without fear.”

“For decades, the Decatur Police Department has repeatedly breached the crucial bond of trust it shares with the community. These multiple violations have eroded the foundation of mutual understanding and respect, reaching a critical point with the tragic murder of Steve Perkins,” says S.I.P. co-founder Terrance Adkins. “This incident highlights the immediate consequences of systemic issues within the department and underscores the urgent need for comprehensive reform to rebuild the shattered trust between law enforcement and the community it serves. Addressing these underlying problems is crucial for fostering a safer and more equitable environment for all residents.”

BACKGROUND:

  • In security camera footage from neighboring homes, at least 18 shots can be heard in the video. Mr. Perkins was hit seven times.
  • After walking out of his house and yelling for the tow operator to put his truck down, two police officers were seen running from Mr. Perkins’ house.
  • Initially, police said Perkins refused orders from officers to put down a weapon when a tow truck operator tried to repossess Perkins’ pickup truck.
  • SIP has called on the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate.