Sacramento Kings teaming up with BLM and local group in response to Stephon Clark tragedy

A week after pledging to be a vocal player in awareness efforts surrounding the police shooting death of Stephon Clark, the Sacramento Kings announced they are teaming up with Black Lives Matter and local activist organization Build. Black. Coalition to respond to activist demand for support for the community and the grass roots.

The new initiative aims “to support the education of young people and to provide the workforce preparation and economic development efforts” according to a statement from the Kings. The multi-year project is intended at spurring “deep investment” into the Sacramento community, beginning with an education fund for Clark’s children.

Sacramento mayor Darrell Steinberg praised the team’s efforts in a statement: “It is clear to me and I know the Kings that there remains a huge gulf between the exciting Sacramento renaissance and the daily struggles experienced by so many in our communities, especially communities of color.

READ MORE: Former Sacramento Kings Matt Barnes, DeMarcus Cousins step up for Stephon Clark

“The Kings actions are a real step towards addressing those underlying issues and connecting the excitement and vitality in downtown to our neighborhoods, which is exactly what motivated me to run for mayor,” Steinberg said.

The Kings will also co-sponsor a forum to hear community voices on the shooting incident Friday night called “Kings and Queens Rise: A Youth Voice Forum for Healing.”

Response from owner

Last week, Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé made a public statement about Stephon Clark’s death following protests that blocked game attendees from entering their Golden 1 Center stadium. 

He vowed that the NBA franchise would not be acting as if business is usual and “are going to work really hard to bring everybody together to make the world a better place, starting with our own community,” he said. “[We’re] going to work really hard to prevent this kind of a tragedy from happening again.” 

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NBA teams honor Stephon Clark
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NBA teams honor Stephon Clark
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings forward Vince Carter (15) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Boston Celtics at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts during warmups in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Boston Celtics forward Al Horford (42) is introduced before the start of the game against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts during warmups in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Members of the Boston Celtics stand on the court during a timeout against the Sacramento Kings in the third quarter at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts on the bench in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Members of the Boston Celtics sit on the bench during a timeout against the Sacramento Kings in the third quarter at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts on the bench in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings guard Buddy Hield (24) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Boston Celtics at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts during warmups in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings guard De'Aaron Fox (5) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Boston Celtics at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts during warmups in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Boston Celtics forward Al Horford (42) is introduced before the start of the game against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts during warmups in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Boston Celtics forward Jaylen Brown (7) is introduced before the start of the game against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts during warmups in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 25, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings forward Vince Carter (15) stands on the court before the start of the game against the Boston Celtics at Golden 1 Center. Players from both teams wore t-shirts during warmups in honor of Stephon Clark, a Sacramento native who was recently shot and killed by Sacramento police. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Sacramento Kings forward Justin Jackson (25) and teammates wear T-shirts bearing the name of Stephon Clark during a game at Golden 1 Center on Sunday March 25, 2018 in Sacramento, Calif. The Kings and Celtics wore shirts bearing the name of the unarmed man, Stephon Clark, who was killed by Sacramento police. The black warm-up shirts have 'Accountability. We are One' on the front and 'Stephon Clark' on the back. (Paul Kitagaki Jr./Sacramento Bee/TNS via Getty Images)
Sacramento Kings players bow their heads as they wear T-shirts bearing the name of Stephon Clark during a game at Golden 1 Center on Sunday March 25, 2018 in Sacramento, Calif. The Kings and Celtics wore shirts bearing the name of the unarmed man, Stephon Clark, who was killed by Sacramento police. The black warm-up shirts have 'Accountability. We are One' on the front and 'Stephon Clark' on the back. (Paul Kitagaki Jr./Sacramento Bee/TNS via Getty Images)
Sacramento Kings forward Justin Jackson (25) wears a T-shirt bearing the name of Stephon Clark during a game at Golden 1 Center on Sunday March 25, 2018 in Sacramento, Calif. The Kings and Celtics wore shirts bearing the name of the unarmed man, Stephon Clark, who was killed by Sacramento police. The black warm-up shirts have 'Accountability. We are One' on the front and 'Stephon Clark' on the back. (Paul Kitagaki Jr./Sacramento Bee/TNS via Getty Images)
Sacramento Kings guard Bogdan Bogdanovic (8) and teammates wear T-shirts bearing the name of Stephon Clark during a game at Golden 1 Center on Sunday March 25, 2018 in Sacramento, Calif. The Kings and Celtics wore shirts bearing the name of the unarmed man, Stephon Clark, who was killed by Sacramento police. The black warm-up shirts have 'Accountability. We are One' on the front and 'Stephon Clark' on the back. (Paul Kitagaki Jr./Sacramento Bee/TNS via Getty Images)
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Just three days later, the Kings’ themselves, sported T-shirts on the court that called for “accountability” by the police department and memorialized Clark’s name. Additionally, players from the Kings and their opponents that day, the Boston Celtics, joined together in a PSA about the tragedies of police violence.

READ MORE: Sacramento BLM activist vows to fight back for Stephon Clark

 “These tragedies have to stop,” “There must be accountability,” “We will not stick to sports,” and “We will not shut up and dribble,” were a few of the sentiments expressed.

Flames fanned

Tensions in Sacramento continue to rise as protests for justice in the death of Stephon Clark increase citywide and nationally. California’s Department of Justice is conducting an independent investigation, and civil rights attorney Ben Crump is now representing the family, but the frustrations of African Americans in the city continue to simmer.

On Tuesday, Stephon’s brother Stevante Clark appeared at the specially-convened City Council meeting and loudly voiced his love for his brother and fellow protesters, as well as his criticism of to the mayor — whom he boldly faced within an inch of separation — and the media’s coverage.

25 PHOTOS
Fatal police shooting of Stephon Clark
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Fatal police shooting of Stephon Clark

 Stephon Clark, 22, was killed in a fatal officer involved shooting in California in March 2018.

(Photo: GoFundMe)

Police helicopter and body camera footage was released of the shooting.


(Photo: Sacramento Police Dept.)

SACRAMENTO, CA - MARCH 26: Sequita Thompson, (L) grandmother of Stephon Clark who was shot and killed by Sacramento police, cries as she speaks during a news conference with civil rights attorney Ben Crump (R) on March 26, 2018 in Sacramento, California. The family of Stephon Clark, an unarmed black man who was shot and killed by Sacramento police officers, have hired civil rights attorney Ben Crump to represent the Clark family in a wrongful death suit against the Sacramento police department. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Police helicopter and body camera footage was released of the shooting.

(Photo: Sacramento Police Dept.)
Candles light a sidewalk memorial to Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
The house where police shooting victim Stephon Clark was slain is seen in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
SACRAMENTO, CA - MARCH 26: A woman cries as civil rights attorney Ben Crump speaks during a news conference at Sacramento City Hall on March 26, 2018 in Sacramento, California. The family of Stephon Clark, an unarmed black man who was shot and killed by Sacramento police officers, has hired civil rights attorney Ben Crump to represent the Clark family in a wrongful death suit against the Sacramento police department. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
A sign is seen painted on the window of a car during a protest over the police shooting of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
Demonstrators gather to protest the police shooting of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
SACRAMENTO, CA - MARCH 26: Tanya Faison (L) with Black Lives Matter of Sacramento yells at a man who had confronted her before the start of a news conference with Civil rights attorney Ben Crump at Sacramento City Hall on March 26, 2018 in Sacramento, California. The family of Stephon Clark, an unarmed black man who was shot and killed by Sacramento police officers, have hired civil rights attorney Ben Crump to represent the Clark family in a wrongful death suit against the Sacramento police department. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SACRAMENTO, CA - MARCH 26: Sequita Thompson, (C) grandmother of Stephon Clark who was shot and killed by Sacramento police, cries during a news conference with civil rights attorney Ben Crump on March 26, 2018 in Sacramento, California. The family of Stephon Clark, an unarmed black man who was shot and killed by Sacramento police officers, have hired civil rights attorney Ben Crump to represent the Clark family in a wrongful death suit against the Sacramento police department. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Deonnah Conway holds candles during a protest over the police shooting of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
Tami Collins, shows a placard protesting the fatal shooting of Stephon Clark by Sacramento police, during a demonstration in Sacramento, California, U.S., March 22, 2018. REUTERS/Sharon Bernstein
The house where police shooting victim Stephon Clark was slain is seen in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
Jayden Sherman (R) and David Massey hold candles during a vigil to protest the police shooting of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
Mar 22, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; A young demonstrator holds a photo of Stephon Clark to the glass of the doors to Golden 1 Center as protestors block the entrance to the arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Demonstrators gather to protest the police shooting of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
Demonstrators hold candles during a vigil to protest the police shooting of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
Demonstrators hold candles during a vigil to protest the police shooting of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, U.S. March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Bob Strong
In Sacramento, police shot at an unarmed black man 20 times, killing him, when he turned out to be holding only a c… https://t.co/HTOLq5BVwP
On Sunday night, Sacramento Police Officers shot and killed Stephon Clark after firing 20 rounds while he was unarm… https://t.co/EynGnsuxrx
Father of two, Stephon Clark, was fatally shot in his backyard by Sacramento police on Sunday night. Police thought… https://t.co/HlfBchf2R2
#StephonClark was fatally shot by Sacramento police in his own backyard, carrying a cell phone that was mistaken fo… https://t.co/d2dYgNRQkX
Unarmed African American man fatally shot by Sacramento Police. He had a cell phone, they shot at him 20 times:… https://t.co/KfR61x8rhm
20 times. After first saying #StephonClark had a gun, then changing it to a crowbar, then admitting he just had a… https://t.co/xu4K0if3jv
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A funeral for Clark was held Thursday. Clark, a Muslim, was set to be honored with a ghusl or Islamic ritual washing by revered Imam Omar Suleiman, but clerics were not able to perform the task because of the way the 20 bullets wounds he received mangled his body. 

Imam Omar Suleiman expressed frustration over the inability to perform the ritual on Twitter.

Meanwhile, California attorney general Xavier Becerra announced Tuesday that he was joining the investigation into Clark’s death. His office will oversee the probe and review the Sacramento Police Department’s policies and use of force training, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

READ MORE: Black officer taunted as “Uncle Tom” during Stephon Clark protests

The post Sacramento Kings teaming up with BLM and local group in response to Stephon Clark tragedy appeared first on theGrio.

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