Jonathan Newton was a cop in Georgia when he blew the whistle about misconduct in the department.
He ended up pursuing a law degree from the University of the District of Columbia and launching the National Association Against Police Brutality, which is an organization to combat racism and abuse in police work as well as to protect police whistleblowers.
Started in December of 2014, the purpose of NAAPB is to eliminate police brutality through citizen education, community empowerment, and civil rights advocacy.
Newton first came on as a public information officer in Clayton County, Georgia, then blew the whistle when Sheriff Victor Hill forced employees to work on his campaign while on county time – which is a violation of campaign rules.
Hill also required Newton write his biography on the taxpayer’s dime.
After Newton blew the whistle, Sheriff Hill sought to have him indicted on theft and forgery charges and he was arrested and fired in May 2011.
Once the judge dismissed the charges, Newton was offered his job back, but he refused and went to law school.
Sheriff Hill was found not guilty of 32 felony corruption charges in 2013.
He was reelected for a third term in May 2016.
Meanwhile, Newton was busy launching the NAAPB as a community service project at the University of the District of Columbia. The organization’s roots began with Newton seeking to find ways to end police brutality and misconduct. NAAPB quickly launched a facebook page projecting its cause, and floods of people reached out seeking help in police brutality situations.
The cornerstone of what the NAAPB does is connecting victims of police and official misconduct with legal, spiritual, and wellness help.
In fact, one of NAAPB’s newest programs is the National Police Incident Reporting Platform, which is comprised of law students and volunteers. The program allows citizens to report police misconduct to a non-governmental organization. The incidents are then reported to legal, spiritual and wellness council.
Within the back-end of the program will be a methodical algorithm that keeps track of patterns and practices of problem officers in locations across the nation.
NAAPB also plans to unveil the National Prosecutors Integrity Program (NPIP). The program will hold prosecutors accountable that withhold exculpatory evidence in trials or illegally strike people from juries based on unconstitutional reasons. Newton believes that citizens need to know if there has been a history of misconduct with the prosecutor that may be handling their trial.
NAAPB wants good cops to feel comfortable blowing the whistle.
In an interview with Photography is Not a Crime, Newton stated the following:
“The good cops have an incentive to sit down at the table and come up with some policies to ensure that when they have someone inside their ranks that has tendencies to act a fool– that officer will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
“It is a problem when America has police forces that are maintaining a structure of institutionalized structural racism.”
“Police violence that occurs against unarmed citizens that goes unaccounted for will produce violence from citizens.”
The NAAPB aims to:
Repeal police officer’s bill of rights in every state, because there are protection clauses amongst police that are unconstitutional.
Create a public database of police misconduct with the officer’s name and the disciplinary deposition.
Mandatory body cameras, dash cameras, and cell cameras with the video footage stored offsite by a court appointed independent organization, with criminal and civil sanctions for any attempt to modify, delete, or impede the process of video acquisition or storage.
Creation of independent special prosecutors council to prosecute police misconduct.
Mandatory standardized deescalation protocols for all police encounters with mentally diminished individuals.
Listen to an audio interview with Newton here.