Blake family lawyers verify Trump spoke with pastor, Trump says no to lawyer meeting
President Donald Trump said he will forego meeting with the family of Jacob Blake — the man shot by Kenosha police while being arrested for outstanding warrants and ignoring a domestic order — because the family wanted civil rights lawyer Benjamin Crump at the meeting.
In light of the litigation the Blake family is engaged in with Kenosha authorities, President Trump said he felt the lawyer’s participation in the meeting was “inappropriate.”
“I thought it would be better not to do anything where there are lawyers involved,” Trump told reporters according to the New York Post.
“They wanted me to speak but they wanted to have lawyers involved. I thought it was inappropriate so I didn’t do that,” he continued.
In addition to the Kenosha litigation, Trump’s Department of Justice has opened a civil rights investigation into the case.
“They did have a lawyer that wanted to be on the phone and I said, ‘No, that’s inappropriate,’ but I just gave my best regards,” he said.
Blake’s lawyer also represents the family of George Floyd.
“According to the record,” says Reuters, “Blake has an arrest warrant filed against him on July 7, 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin for an incident involving domestic abuse that happened on May 3. The offenses listed are criminal trespass to dwelling, third-degree sexual assault and disorderly conduct.”
At the time of the shooting, police were attempting to arrest Blake on the outstanding warrants.
Blake’s father said he didn’t want to play politics but then said that Trump’s claim to have spoken to the Blake family pastor was not true.
“First of all, I’m not going to play politics,” Jacob Blake Sr. said according to local WISN. “This is my son’s life we’re talking about. Second of all, we don’t have a family pastor. I don’t know who he talked to.”
In fact, lawyer Crump later released a statement saying that President Trump had spoken with the pastor of Jacob Blake’s mother.
“President reached out to the pastor of Jacob Blake’s mother, Julia Jackson, to arrange a phone conversation with her. He appropriately [referred] the White House to the legal team, but, as President Trump acknowledged during his televised briefing, he declined to have a call if Ms. Jackson’s legal team monitored the call,” said Crump via Twitter.
The Democrats have blasted Trump for his plans to visit Kenosha, WI today, the scene of the Blake shooting, where mass protests have turned deadly.
The Democrats have said that Trump’s visit will just escalate tensions.
Trump countered that his visit “could also increase enthusiasm and it could increase love and respect for our country,” according to USA Today.
The President plans on touring the devastated areas of Kenosha, visit an emergency center and host a discussion on community safety, says USA Today.
PHOTO: Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour
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