Standing Room Only: Family of man fatally shot by officer confronts BART board at meeting

- It was a standing-room only crowd at the BART board meeting Thursday morning as people came to voice their concerns about the fatal shooting of 28-year-old Shaleem Tindle by BART Officer Joseph Mateu.

"We would like a conviction of officer Joseph Mateu for murdering my little brother in cold blood," said Tindle's brother, professional boxer, Karim Mayfield.

He was just one of many people who took to the podium to address the board members about Tindle's Jan. 3 death outside the West Oakland BART station.

"I want you to consider what kind of police officer you have working for you. Who you have out there and you've unleashed on us again," said a member of the crowd.  

All expressed their wishes to the BART board for what they feel will be "Justice for Tindle."

"Fire Joseph Mateu! Fire him today," urged Anti Police-Terror Project member Cat Brooks.  

Their demands come one day after BART police released Mateu's body-camera footage from the deadly shooting one day after parts of it was leaked.  

"[It's a] pathological thought pattern of murdering someone and then he's back at work the next two weeks.  That's an insult,"  Tindle's mother Yolanda Banks Reed told the board.

Per BART police policy for officer-involved shootings, Mateu was cleared to return to full duty on January 18th. After police say he passed drug and alcohol tests and psychological exams.  

"Days after murdering somebody, this man is capable and competent to back in our community.  That alone should be a no no," Reed said. "He was shot in the back so tell me what are you going to do today? Each of you has seen the video what are you going to do?" 

"The BART board can't take action today. This is not an agenda item," BART Board President Robert Raburn told the crowd. 

Those words caused an uproar and the board went into a closed session.  As some people chanted, "No justice! No peace!"

Others vented about a statement that BART police chief said during a press conference Wednesday.

"Officer Mateu ran towards gunfire as people ran away from gunfire and that's courage," BART Police Chief Carlos Rojas said.

"We're pretty appalled for him to make a statement that he said what the officer being courageous makes me feel that he said he was a hero for the most part for killing my brother," Karim Mayfield said.

Thursday after the meeting, the chief again addressed that statement. "Anybody who is running towards gunshots to go help members of our community. I believe that is courageous," says Rojas.  

"He got to get the hell up out of here. We don't want to see him at no BART station, we don't want to see him at no malls. We don't want to see his ass nowhere," Tindle's other brother, LaRon Mayfield said.  

"As the police chief I do have the authority to place him on desk duty or another assignment," said Rojas.  

The chief also said he may consider reassigning Mateu while the investigation is underway.  


 

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