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‘Heart Breaks’ in Stephon Shooting, Kamala Harris Says

Clark was shot by Sacramento police while holding a cellphone

UNITED STATES - JANUARY 23: Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., arrives in the Capitol for the Senate Democrats' policy lunch on Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 23: Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., arrives in the Capitol for the Senate Democrats' policy lunch on Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Kamala Harris commented on one of the most recent shootings of an unarmed black man by police that has sparked national outrage.

Speaking at a Sacramento town hall, the California Democrat said Stephon Clark’s life “is a life that should not have been lost. That is a loss that should not have been taken.”

Harris, the former attorney general for California, spoke about her work in that position to train police about implicit bias.

She said the program “trained over 2,000 police officers to recognize that we all carry bias.”

“We all do,” she said. “But when your bias is coupled with the fact that you carry a gun, it is something that has to be a priority for us.”

Clark, who was 22 years old, was shot by an officer in the Sacramento police department holding only a cellphone.

Clark’s grandmother was in the audience of Harris’ event and received a standing ovation.

Patricia Holt, who said she traveled from Vallejo, California said she wanted to hear Harris say specifically what “she is going to do something to make the police department be held accountable for what they’ve been doing.”

But Harris was vague when speaking with reporters about legislation in California’s legislature. One measure would raise the standard for the use of deadly force.

“I think they’re very interesting. Certainly, there’s work to be done,” she said.

Similarly, Harris did not give a clear response when asked if law enforcement has too much influence in state government.

“I think we need to have reform,” she said. “There’s no question.”

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