30-year old Rockim Prowell was recently arrested in Los Angeles after pulling off at least 30 home burglaries. In each case, he was wearing a white prosthetic face mask, a light brown wig, and glasses. In other words, he was in “white-face!”
So he couldn’t have imagined how he’d finally get caught.
In a completely unrelated case, Prowell was driving around in Beverly Hills with his mask off – and police pulled him over for a traffic stop! Once they searched his car, it was all over. Police found his prosthetics, stolen items, and evidence that his car was stolen, too.
But, Prowell isn’t actually the first person to do this.
Back in 2010, a white man in Ohio used a “hyper-realistic” face mask to disguise himself as a Black man to rob banks. We can guess why he did it – a bunch of actual Black men who “looked like him” got arrested instead!
In other words, both robbers were trying to play the game. Their masks might be silly, but they demonstrate a dark truth about policing and the law.
They knew that police criminalize Blackness more than actual "crimes." And, ironically, they’re right! That’s exactly why we can’t expect the white supremacist police system to deliver justice. Because justice isn't their concern – criminalizing Black people is.