True Healing Under God (THUG) held a meeting Monday night at McNeill Funeral Home, garnering support and information on issues dealing with law enforcement.
John Barnette, president of THUG, said more than 50 people attended Monday’s meeting. Some had grievances, some people were interested in finding out what was happening and some were ready to join.
Danielle Davis, a sister of a man she says was victimized by law enforcement officials nine years ago, was present at the meeting. She has been seeking some sort of legal action since his death. The Davis family turned to Barnette for support.
“My family and I are hoping John (Barnette) can help us,” Davis said. “We need some sort of action.”
Part of THUG’s mission is to help families who cannot afford an attorney.
“This is something Richmond County has needed for a while,” Davis said.
“Some are legit,” Barnette said. “Some may not be. Some are questionable.”
In Richmond County, Barnette says there are 14 cases THUG is investigating, including Davis’.
“We base that number on people who have been (wrongfully) incarcerated and contacted us,” Barnette said.
Focusing primarily on race-related incidents, Barnette said he is also working with non-race related cases in Richmond County.
“We plan to let everyone know what’s going on,” Barnette said.
The steps include scheduling meetings with public officials. So far, Barnette has spoken to representatives from the District Attorney’s office and city leaders around the county.
At noon on Saturday, THUG is holding a justice rally at McNeill Funeral Home for interested parties and to begin planning.
“We may need to get some more chairs,” Barnette said. “(We) hope to make Rockingham a better place for those who don’t feel like it is.”
After Saturday’s rally, THUG, and others involved with the group, will begin a county-wide “tour” speaking to citizens with concerns and then with law enforcement and city officials about the possible issues within their departments.
Davis says she and her family intend to stay active in THUG.
“We’re still increasing (in numbers),” Barnette said. “I’m going to speak with the NAACP at their meeting. I hope to work in collaboration instead of us both fighting the same fight separately.”
For more information on THUG, call (704) 906-2037 or e-mail email@example.com.
Staff writer Bryan Stewart can be reached at 997-3111 ext. 15 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.