Black Youth Beaten by Champaign Police

It has been two years since Kiwane Carrington was killed by a Champaign police officer, but 18-year-old black youth, Calvin Miller, is still afraid of the police. So when a Champaign cop attempted to pull him over for no apparent reason, he panicked. He only wanted to get home that night.

When Calvin appeared in court for arraignment on Monday afternoon, he walked into the courtroom with crutches. His right ankle was sprained, maybe fractured. His right eye was swollen shut. He also had bump on the right side of his forehead. Other people noticeably stared at him.

Called before Judge Richard Klaus, Calvin was told that he was being charged with resisting a “peace” officer. He had “exited a fleeing vehicle” and “lunged” toward Champaign police officer Matt Rush. He was also being charged for criminal damage to property, less than $300, when the vehicle he was driving ran into the porch steps of a house. The story Calvin told me after the hearing was significantly different.

According to Calvin, he had dropped of a friend at around 1 a.m. on Monday morning, October 24, 2011, and was driving home when a Champaign police car pulled up behind him on Marketview Drive. Calvin says he obeyed all the traffic laws and drove the speed limit. The officer turned on his lights. Close to his mother’s house, Calvin kept driving with the hope he could make it there. After a couple blocks, he turned into a residential driveway on Arcadia. Calvin says the police officer rammed him with his squad car, causing the car to lurch forward into the porch steps. Calvin got out of the car and started to run toward his house.

Police told him to stop and Calvin says he responded by getting on the ground. As Calvin tells the story, officer Jon Lieb approached and hit him in the face with his baton several times. “When they told me to stop,” Calvin said. “I stopped. He didn’t need to beat me in my head.” Calvin put his hands up over his head, but the cop kept beating him, injuring him on his forehead, eye, and jaw.

Calvin rolled over onto his stomach and was placed in handcuffs. Lieb pepper sprayed Calvin directly in his face while he was handcuffed. He was then placed under arrest. Calvin was taken to Carle Hospital which failed to conduct any tests or even wash the pepper spray out of his eyes. He was bailed out of jail the next morning.

Incidentally, Calvin is also the son of local black activist Martel Miller, who has consistently appeared at city council meetings reporting on the brutality of the Champaign police. I saw Calvin at rallies and teach-ins with his father after the Kiwane Carrington incident. While not as politically active as his father, he was deeply affected by the killing of Kiwane, who was only a year younger than Calvin at the time of his death. Calvin has no criminal background, but remains scared of the police. He is currently a student at Parkland College.



Ohh for the love of God

You have to be kidding me. He admits he runs from the police, blames them for his resisting arrest, then blames Carle Hospital for not treating him, even though you say you saw him on crutches. The difference between a journalist and what you are is obvious. A journalist gets both sides of the story and prints the truth. HE RAN and RESISTED ARREST!!!


The cop rammed into his car. Say that again: rammed into his car. You really think Mr. Police officer was just doing his job and following the code of the law? Right. Why was he pulled over in the first place? As a police officer, when is it ever necessary to ram your vehicle into someone elses stopped vehicle? I'd say the cop who pulled him over had no intention of handelling the situation the way he would if he were "just doing his job", so to speak. If some cop had rammed into my car at all, let alone for no apparent reason, I'd take my chances running too.

Sad State of Affairs

The system is a vampire.




People cannot keep saying they ran because they were scared. DUH, everyone is scared when they are stopped by the cops. But you are not suppose to run. Get that through your heads People. Or learn it the hard way, but don't cry about it.

If you run than there is a guilty reason and they will use whatever force is needed to stop you. If you get beat than you get beat. Been there done that. And I was a girl and I was white and I was a kid 14 yrs old. This was back in mid-late 70's in Indiana.

You can bet damn straight if I was a cop I would use whatever training I had for my own protection to make a person stop because when I clock out off the job I want to go home to my family.

As for the cops car ramming into a stopped car that is entirely possible to happen It's unfortunate but it happens. Can't very well stop on a dime every single time now can you. If you could than insurance companies would go broke cause no one would ever have an accident. You'd have to be a robot to have precise control in your every action in the midst of multi-tasking.

Grow up People.

don't run

exactly. what's you're supposed to do when confronted by police is submit and defer and hope they don't beat you anyway

Rietz on the incident

Champaign council hears accusations against police

Tue, 10/25/2011 - 10:07pm | Mary Schenk and Patrick Wade

CHAMPAIGN -- Usually a docile place, the Champaign City Council chambers on Tuesday night forced Mayor Don Gerard to recess the meeting while he made a decision whether to hear from speakers concerned about the alleged police beating of a black teenager.
Voices bellowed from the audience section, particularly that of activist Martel Miller, who says his son was the victim of a police attack and excessive force after a chase.
"He ran because he was scared of the police," Miller yelled. "The kids should not be scared of the police."
A public comment period was not listed on the agenda, a fact that was not received well by audience members who wanted to speak. The mood in the chambers quickly became tense, and Gerard recessed the meeting while he consulted with city administrators.
The council eventually allowed audience members to address the alleged beating. Many wore yellow tags that said, "I stand with Calvin Miller," who appeared at the meeting on crutches.
Calvin Miller did not say much, but Martel Miller said city officials need to deal with several "rogue officers."
"Champaign kids in the African-American community should not be scared of the police," Miller said.
The comments focused on the alleged attack, but a persistent theme was that the speakers wanted city officials to cultivate more trust between the city's police department and the black community.
Otis Noble III, a friend of Martel Miller's, said he moved to Champaign a few years ago to work at the University of Illinois and was troubled by what he saw.
"This hits too close to home," Noble said.
Donte Lotts pointed to a photo of Calvin Miller taken after the alleged beating.
"This disturbs me," Lotts said. "I have never seen a frown on this young man's face in all the years I've known him."
He said the city needs to do more to show kids in the community how to interact with police.
"Each time we have an incident like this, we take three or four steps backwards, and we need to be more proactive," Lotts said.
The story documented by justice officials differs somewhat from what speakers told the council on Tuesday night.
State's Attorney Julia Rietz said Calvin Miller, 18, of the 1000 block of South Duncan Road, was spotted by an officer about 1:30 a.m. Monday as he sped out of the University Village apartment complex in the 2000 block of North Moreland Boulevard, ran over a curb, and allegedly ran a red light at the intersection of Moreland and Marketview Drive.
The officer, who had his lights and sirens activated, followed the van that Miller was driving south on Neil Street and continued following it to the intersection of Greenbriar and Arcadia drives, where the officer saw the driver's door open. While the van was moving at about 15 mph, the driver, later identified as Calvin Miller, jumped from it. The van continued on and hit the front of a house in the 200 block of Arcadia, damaging the front steps and handrail, Rietz said.
After a brief foot chase, during which Miller allegedly jumped a fence, the officer caught up with and tackled Miller in a yard on Brookwood Drive. Another officer joined in and the two wrestled with Miller, Rietz said. He complied after one of the officers sprayed him with pepper spray.
Rietz said when interviewed, Miller told the officer that his father, Martel Miller, told him he was not required to stop for police and to keep driving and call him, which he said he was trying to do. Rietz said officers described the younger Miller as "very apologetic."
He was charged with resisting arrest and criminal damage to property, both misdemeanors.

Training police to over-react

That which is rewarded is repeated. When police over-react in this county, they're rarely charged. When they do go to trial they get minor sentances, the rare times they aren't found not guilty.

Nation wide, the legal precident seems to be if a police officer honestly believes he is under threat then whatever was done is acceptable. What that does is to train police to aways see threat because honestly perceiving threat protects them from culpability.

When a civilian honestly perceives threat s/he's charged with resisting arrest.

That's wrong.

I am absolutely sorrowful for

I am absolutely sorrowful for the black community in Champaign.  There is one man, Martel Miller, and his two sons, making things in this town so much worse.


Why are some of you choosing to, once again, take the word of a convicted criminal who has already been proven a liar with VIDEO EVIDENCE?

Please, someone please tell me why you're doing it?  Is it because you share skin color?  Is it because you're angry at the police and looking for some way to lash out?

These are not rhetorical questions, I am really curious.  In my head, it seems insane to support someone when you know they're you realize that by doing this on the basis of race that it is you, the accuser, who is the racist?

victim blaming

"Why are some of you choosing to, once again, take the word of a convicted criminal who has already been proven a liar with VIDEO EVIDENCE?"

You are mistaken, the police were never convicted

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