Black People Weren't "Human" To This Police Department

LAPD officers
Zain Murdock
May 14, 2021

One city’s police officers started using “No Humans Involved” in the 80s in reports to refer to incidents involving Black people, but they've been dehumanizing us since well before then. They’ve even tried to justify their blatant use of “NHI” with some disgusting logic.

LAPD Chief Daryl F. Gates literally said that African-Americans “responded differently than ‘normal people’ to being choked with a police baton.” So they could beat us however they wanted!

Some groups of Black people had it worse than others.

People most targeted as “NHI” were typically those they suspected to be gang members, unhoused, taking drugs, immigrants, and especially Black queer and transgender women doing sex work. In one big case, they let dozens of Black women die at the hands of a serial killer!

The “Grim Sleeper” murdered Black women for 20 years. Police didn’t care because the victims were Black, poor, on drugs, transgender, and/or sex workers. And when they were killed, police didn’t even bother to do forensics! They labeled them as “NHI” and dumped the bodies.

This shouldn't even have to be said: we are human beings. This example is from Los Angeles, but as we understand how police officers country-wide operate, we see that this system is rooted in the dehumanization of Black people. They might not use this specific term anymore, but we know how they view us.