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Human Resources Department

Commission on Human Rights

For Immediate Release

<p>CHR Statement on David Ward</p>

Santa Rosa,CA | February 25, 2022

The Commission on Human Rights would like to express not only our sincerest condolences to the family and friends of David Ward, but additionally include our solidarity in seeking justice for the wrongful killing of Mr. Ward. As reported by the Press Democrat on February 2, 2022, jurors found Sonoma County Sheriff's Deputy Charles Blount not guilty of involuntary manslaughter and assault by a Peace Officer. Blount has been acquitted from all charges.

We as a Commission wish to re-emphasize the integrity of every human life that must be protected. In the case against Deputy Blount, this commitment to protect the community was not upheld as his actions on November 27, 2019 resulting in the killing of Mr. Ward and captured on bodycam footage. However, the jury ultimately decided that Blount’s decisions were “reasonable and lawful” given he had reasonable suspicion that Ward was involved in a carjacking where it was later learned that Ward who’d reported the car stolen days before but not told authorities after he’d reclaimed it.

A case of a stolen car should never end in a suspect’s death. And the fact that the victim’s past drug use was held as judgment against him and the Plaintiff's plea to admit evidence of Deputy Blount's history of past use of excessive force as well as lying under oath was refused. We believe that the Scales of Justice have been and continue to be tipped inappropriately in cases of excessive force, brutality and wrongful death perpetrated by police in Sonoma County.

Katrina Phillips

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Media contact: Katrina Phillips
(213) 254-8870