The killing of Cheri Lyn Moore on April 14, 2006 tragically illustrates the failures of a misguided and bureaucratized “public safety” system. In this writing we deliberately refer to Cheri Lyn Moore by her first name, as her friends and family do, and we acknowledge her as a real, feeling, dynamic human being; we want to counter the objectifying and criminalizing references made by media and police, calling her "Moore", and devaluing her life by repeatedly describing her through only the claims made by the police who murdered her. Cheri was reaching out for help in a time of physical, psychological, and emotional crisis; however, rather than receiving the assistance and comfort that she needed, she ultimately met her death at the hands of an overzealous and militarized police force.
This is not an isolated incident: Eureka Police Department [EPD], much like many police outfits throughout the country, regularly criminalize people in mental and emotional crises (especially if those people are poor) and then often exaggerate or flat out lie about danger they were "threatened with" in order to justify killing or severely harming those civilians. One remarkable distinction, however, between EPD and many other police departments who's officers are suspected or known to have used excessive violence or lethal violence, is the patent and utter refusal of EPD or the City of Eureka to fire, reprimand, or demote such officers- even if only for the purpose of instilling confidence in the communities which they 'police'. Because EPD routinely ignores, downplays and covers up instances of wrongful and unjustified use of force, there is a climate of indulgence in the department, whereby officers – and particularly those with predilections for over-aggressiveness, violence and abuse of authority, feel free to violate peoples' rights while on duty, because they are confident no disciplinary consequences will arise.