FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Friday, May 7, 2021
Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office Releases Investigation Report. Doesn’t Criminally Charge Police Officers In the Death of Miles Hall, Killed by Walnut Creek Police June 2, 2019
Walnut Creek CA---
Official statement from the family of Miles Hall
To say that we are disappointed in the Contra Costa County District Attorney's investigation and decision not to charge any of the police officers in the killing of our son is an understatement. These officers were back on the streets of Walnut Creek just 12 days after they shot our son Miles a block from our home. Today we learned that they will remain there without consequences for their actions.
Every day since June 2, 2019, our lives have been consumed with trying to prevent another family from experiencing the same heartbreak of seeing their loved one in crisis, needing help, and instead of receiving care, being violently taken from them by the very people called to help.
After nearly two long years of waiting anxiously for the conclusion of what we had hoped would be a thorough, unbiased, factually accurate investigation, we learned that there will be no justice and no accountability for the indefensible actions that resulted in our son’s death -- at least not today.
The officers who shot and killed our son, Miles Hall, acted recklessly and should have been criminally charged. The officers' wildly distorted depictions of the incident that took Miles' life directly contradict the record established by officers' own body cameras and other video footage, as well as by eyewitness accounts. Anyone looking at the evidence knows the truth.
Miles posed no threat to officers as he attempted to run to the safety of his home. The officers fired lethal weapons with wanton disregard for his life. They flouted their responsibility to de-escalate at the scene. They escalated to gunfire within moments instead of following their department’s own protocols for interactions with people in a mental health crisis.
We know that Miles' dual status as a young man in the throes of a mental health crisis and as a Black man made him particularly vulnerable to police violence. Miles needed care and compassion that day; instead he was met with lethal force. Not holding the police accountable for misconduct, especially when that misconduct results in someone's death, makes us ALL less safe.
We are heartbroken, yet still determined to fight for justice for Miles and for everyone who has been harmed by police brutality and denied justice in a system that stigmatizes and criminalizes people with mental illness, especially when they are Black and Brown.
We want everyone to know that we created The Miles Hall Foundation to turn our personal pain into greater purpose. In partnership with community organizations such as NAMI Contra Costa and local leaders, The Miles Hall Foundation is committed to supporting and protecting families by educating communities about mental illness and protecting those impacted with mental illness from excessive use of force by law enforcement.
While today is a somber day for our family and for our community of supporters, and we greatly miss our beloved son, Miles is inspiring us to push forward with this life-saving work.
We will be asking the California Attorney General and the Department of Justice to review this case for criminal prosecution.
We can’t stop and we won’t ever stop saying his name – Miles Hall!
Since Miles death in June of 2019, the Hall family has worked tirelessly to advocate for non-police response to calls for help when someone is in a mental health emergency. Currently, the “Miles Hall Lifeline Act” - Assembly Bill 988 is making its way through the California legislature to fund an alternative to 911 for calls for help that do not need a police response. The #MilesHallLifelineAct #AB988 will save lives and decriminalize individuals who need help, not handcuffs.
With today’s decision not to charge the officers who killed Miles with a crime, the Contra Costa County DA’s office has reinforced the dangerous and stigmatizing misperception that those living with mental illness, especially if they are people of color, are the criminals and that violence and gun fire are appropriate responses to their calls for help. That is wrong and runs counter to facts.
The Hall family is calling on the California Attorney General and the US Department of Justice to do their own investigation into the killing of Miles Hall. Miles should be alive today. The Contra Costa DA’s report is inaccurate, inadequate, and is not what justice looks like. CALL TO ACTION: please call and write to the Contra Costa DA and the California AG to express your outrage that nearly two years after the killing of Miles Hall, the investigation into his killing by Walnut Creek police resulted in nothing that will hold these officers accountable.
Our streets are less safe today because no one has been held accountable for Miles’ death. That can not stand.