“They build jails ‘cause of me!” When Denzel Washington played corrupt cop Alonzo Harris in Oscar-winning film “Training Day,” it wasn’t 100% fiction.
Washington’s character was largely based on former LAPD officer Rafael Pérez, the Afro-Latino cop who caused serious damage as a part of the infamous CRASH unit.
Perez was among the 90% of the unit’s officers committing misconduct in the 80s and 90s. That’s why when Pérez and his partner framed and shot a 19 year old, their sergeant gave them a plaque as reward! But it doesn’t stop there.
We may be tempted to celebrate hiring Black officers, or even just enjoy watching cop thrillers. But we must remember the reality beyond the headlines and fictional stories: the Black cop is not a hero to Black communities, but actually the opposite!