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One thing to know about police—they just don’t have any qualms about criminalizing Black children.

Black Boy

Source: Andersen Ross Photography Inc / Getty

We saw this in 202, when police officers in Aurora, Colorado, put children, the youngest of whom was 6, in handcuffs and laid them on the ground face-down after pulling over the SUV they were riding in, which they suspected was stolen even though the vehicle description they had was of a motorcycle. We saw it again in 2021, when a viral video showed a policewoman in Rochester, New York, pepper spraying a visibly distraught 9-year-old Black girl in the eyes and then cop-splain to the not-even-adolescent child that she deserved it because she was behaving unruly. Hell, we’ve even seen it outside of America, like when a Met police officer tased a 10-year-old Black girl twice while she was moving away from him.

Now, we’re seeing it again in Mississippi—the unofficial American capital of lynched Black children.

In August, we reported that 10-year-old Quantavious Eason of Senatobia, Mississippi, was handcuffed, arrested and jailed for urinating in a parking lot behind his mother’s car. His mother, Latonya Eason, had already been informed by police of his mundane infraction and reprimanded him for it. The cop who decided after the fact that it wasn’t enough for Quantavious to be scolded by his mother and that he needed to be put in jail was fired. The police chief called the arrest an “error in judgment.”

So, why the hell is this pre-teen child still being sentenced to probation?

According to CNN, after a Tuesday hearing at the Youth Court of Tate County, Quantavious was sentenced to three months probation and has been ordered to write a book report. Now, it was decided that the infraction wouldn’t go on his juvenile record—which means law enforcement in Senatobia, at the very least, had the good sense not to brand a 10-year-old as a criminal for having a 10-year-old’s bladder—but why the arbitrary sentencing? Why not just leave this boy—who didn’t do anything serious, uncommon, or worthy of subjecting a child to the criminal justice system—the hell alone?

The court also assigned Quantavious a mandatory 2-page book report on late NBA legend Kobe Bryant—and we’re all supposed to pretend that doesn’t have “special Black boy sentence” written all over it. 

At the time of the arrest, Carlos Moore, an attorney representing Quantavious’ family, told CNN that the 10-year-old was “distraught and now afraid of police,” which any child that young would be after that experience. So, why reopen that wound with an unnecessary legal hearing and sentencing?

He went on to tell NBC that he believes Quantavious’ race played a role in the case and he’s “baffled” by how things played out.

“He did what any reasonable person would do: He urinated next to the car behind the door — not exposing himself to anyone,” Moore said. “He would not have been arrested, prosecuted or sentenced if he was any other color, race, besides Black.”

“We are not going to appeal,” he added. “He will not have a criminal record, this is probation. And he is a fan of Kobe Bryant, so he doesn’t mind writing the two-page report. But, still, the principle of it — he should not have to do anything. He should be enjoying his Christmas holiday like the other kids.”



No doubt, the authorities in Senatobia will justify this white nonsense by claiming they’ve provided Quantavious with a valuable lesson on respect and decency, but there’s no value in this. They aren’t doing this child any favors by traumatizing and criminalizing him for doing something grown men around the world, cops included, do so commonly it’s easy to forget it’s against the law in the first place. And it’s damn hard to imagine police officers or officers of the court doing this kind of thing to prepubescent white children.

This is shameful, discompassionate, and completely unnecessary. And when we say “f**k 12,” this is why.


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