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High school marching band conductor stands on metal lift with shako hat with plumes

Source: Shelly Bychowski / Getty

Add “direct a high school band” to the list of things Black folks can’t do without fear of police violence.

Johnny Mims is the band director for Minor High School in Adamsville, Alabama, a small suburb outside of Birmingham, and he was subject to a cop’s taser multiple times over his refusal to stop the music.

According to CBS News, Minor High School and P.D. Jackson-Olin High School participated in a “fifth quarter” band exhibition following the school’s football game. For those who aren’t aware, the fifth quarter is an HBCU tradition that is essentially a battle of the bands following a game.

According to WVTM13, the Birmingham City School does not allow fifth quarters and released a public statement saying, “As a safety precaution, fifth quarter performances are not allowed”

As police attempted to shut down the music, Mims told the fun killer officer “Get out my face.” That’s when things went way left for no reason.

I’ve got my troops coming,” the officer says. The officer then instructs Mims to stop the students playing and tells Mims, “You will go to jail,” to which Mims replies, “That’s cool,” reports WVTM 13.

What you’re about to see next is the overly aggressive and violent result of Mims’ defiance via body camera footage.


As you saw, Mims was hit with the taser multiple times, arrested, and charged with disorderly conduct, physical harassment, and resisting arrest. Mims’ lawyer, Juandalynn Givan spoke on the legal action that he and his client plan to take against the Birmingham Police Department:

“The objective is not only to seek damages for the pain and suffering endured by the band director but also to shed light on the systemic issues within law enforcement and advocate for change,” Givan said in the statement, calling the incident “an alarming abuse of power and a clear violation of our client’s civil rights.”

We’ll be keeping an eye on this story and will bring you more information as it becomes available.


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