ST. LOUIS (KMOX) — State Sen. Jamilah Nasheed is calling on St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson and the region’s black elected officials to hold an emergency meeting to discuss inequities in the region.
Nasheed told KMOX’s Mark Reardon there needs to be a much higher level of understanding from both sides.
“At the end of the day we have to figure out how we’re going to rebuild our city,” Nasheed said. “How are we going to be able to divide the polarized racial gap in the city of St. Louis and quit taking sides?”
Nasheed says there should easily be consensus on things like job growth, wages, police-community relations and more — she says the region needs to solidify a plan to address these things — namely generational and systemic poverty — and move forward.
“Poverty is the root that breeds crime,” Nasheed told Reardon. “When individuals cannot find a job, they’ve got to figure out some way to put food on the table.”
Nasheed called for the emergency meeting in the wake of days or protests in and around St. Louis due to the acquittal of former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley, a white man, who shot and killed Anthony Lamar Smith, a black man, after Smith led officers on a high speed chase following a suspected drug deal. The prosecution in the case and those protesting believe Stockley had a plan to kill Smith and planted the weapon found in Smith’s car. Judge Timothy Wilson wasn’t convinced, and said the state didn’t provide compelling enough evidence to convict Stockley of First Degree Murder beyond a reasonable doubt.