Two weeks after 37-year-old Natasha McKenna smiled before she was booked into the Fairfax County jail, she was dead. She died several days after being tased by Sheriff’s deputies who were trying to transport her to the Alexandria jail.
McKenna, who had a history of mental illness, was taken into custody in February, and according to the Washington Post, during her arrest McKenna’s hands were “cuffed behind her back and tied to the shackles on her feet and her face was covered with a mask to prevent biting and spitting.” After resisting arrest and not complying with officers, McKenna was then shocked with four 50,000 volts from a Taser. Soon after receiving the shots, she went into cardiac arrest and died several days later.
“They didn’t need to confront her this way. They made it worse,” McKenna’s mother, Marlene Williams, told the Post. “She was mentally sick.”
Unfortunately not too many people are familiar with McKenna’s story. And there were no marches for the death of a black woman at the hands of the police. People are wondering why?
Virginia has now changed its laws when it comes to the use of Tasers after McKenna’s death at the hands of police, but much more needs to be changed. Black women are commonly overlooked when it comes to being the subjects of police brutality and it needs to stop.
Black women’s lives matter too.
Photo Credit: Fairfax County Police Department