Mothers of black sons and daughters killed by police have turned on Black Lives Matter and its departing director Patrice Cullors over their alleged greed.
‘I don’t believe she is going anywhere,’ said Samaria Rice, the mother of 12-year-old Tamir Rice who was shot dead by Cleveland police as he played with a toy gun.
‘It’s all a facade. She’s only saying that to get the heat off her right now,’ she told the New York Post.
Rice spoke after Cullors announced she was stepping down from Black Lives Matter on Friday, amid controversy over her $3 million property portfolio.
The mom said that she had been in touch with Cullors over email in the hope of re-opening a federal investigation into her son’s death in 2014, but said the pair had never met face-to-face.
Samaria Rice the mother of Tamir Rice, has never met Patrisse Cullors, and believes she is only leaving Black Lives Matter to escape the heat over her $3 million property portfolio. In November 2014, Tamir Rice was killed in Cleveland, Ohio, by Timothy Loehmann, a 26-year-old white police officer. Rice was carrying a replica toy gun at the time of his killing
Lisa Simpson the mother of Richard Risher has said she has not received a penny from BLM despite a local Los Angeles chapter offering to donate $,5000. RIght, Richard Risher was shot and killed by LAPD officers when he was 18-years-old in what police described as a ‘running gun battle’
Breonna Taylor’s (right) mother Tamika Palmer (left) called out Black Lives Matter Louisville and using the word ‘fraud’ to describe the organization in a Facebook post last April
Tamika Palmer gave credit to family, friends and local community activists for supporting her family in the year since her daughter’s death, but described Black Live Matter as a ‘fraud’
‘They are benefiting off the blood of our loved ones, and they won’t even talk to us,’ she said.
Rice’s view is shared by Lisa Simpson, the mother of Richard Risher, 18, who died in July 2016 as he was chased by LAPD outside a housing project.
Police said that Risher had a handgun leading police to fire 64 rounds.
Breonna Taylor’s mother, Tamika Palmer, has also said that BLM failed her.
‘I have never personally dealt with BLM Louisville and personally have found them to be fraud (sic),’ she wrote in an April Facebook post.
Taylor was shot dead in a police raid at her home in Louisville, Kentucky in March 2020.
Her killing became one of the key talking points of Black Lives Matter activists, and anti-police brutality campaigners, throughout last year.
Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors announced on Friday she was stepping down as executive director of the organization amid controversy over her $3 million property portfolio
Cullors faced fierce backlash over her personal spending – including the recent purchase of a $1.4 million home in a ritzy L.A. neighborhood (pictured)
Speaking of Cullors’ sudden departure from the organization, Simpson, 52, was blunt: ‘Now she doesn’t have to show her accountability. She can just take the money and run.’
Simpson, who lives in Los Angeles, was told that her local BLM chapter raised $5,000 for her son’s funeral.
She has not received a cent.
Simpson blasted Black Lives Matter for ‘raising money in our dead sons’ names and giving us nothing in return.’
Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors has stepped down from Black Lives Matter but the organization she helped found is coming in for criticism from those it purports to help
‘We never hired them to be the representatives in the fight for justice for our dead loved ones murdered by the police,’ Rice and Simpson said in a joint statement earlier this year.
‘The ‘activists’ have events in our cities and have not given us anything substantial for using our loved ones’ images and names on their flyers.
‘We don’t want or need y’all parading in the streets accumulating donations, platforms, movie deals, etc. off the death of our loved ones, while the families and communities are left clueless and broken.’
Simpson is hoping to secure justice for her son whom she claims was ‘shot for running while black.’
She set up the Richard Risher Foundation to raise funds after BLM activists did not help her.
‘They called me an agent provocateur, a liar and crazy. I am the boots on the ground in this fight, not Black Lives Matter.
‘I’m just a mother who lost my kid. I haven’t gotten any justice and I don’t even know what that looks like.’
Black Lives Matter was established nearly eight years ago in response to injustice against black Americans but the foundation has recently been mired in controversy over its finances and the personal wealth of its founder, Patrisse Cullors.
The BLM foundation revealed earlier this year that it managed to raise more than $90 million last year, following the May 2020 murder of George Floyd.
The foundation said it ended 2020 with a balance of more than $60 million, after spending nearly a quarter of its assets on operating expenses and grants to black-led organizations.
But critics of the foundation contend more of that money should have gone to the families of black victims of police brutality who have been unable to access the resources needed to deal with their trauma and loss.
Some have accused the group of profiting off the deaths including family members who have lost loved ones.
On Friday, Cullors, 37, announced she was stepping down as executive director of the organization amid controversy over her $3 million property portfolio.
Cullors and the foundation have said they support families, but without making public announcements or disclosing dollar amounts.
Last summer, amid national racial injustice protests triggered by the police killing of George Floyd on Memorial Day, Taylor’s name also became a rallying cry for those marching, demanding ‘Justice for Breonna’. A protest is pictured in September 2020
On Friday, Patrisse Cullors said she was leaving BLM to focus on other projects, including the upcoming release of her second book and a multi-year TV development deal with Warner Bros.
‘I’ve created the infrastructure and the support, and the necessary bones and foundation, so that I can leave,’ Cullors stated. ‘It feels like the time is right.’
But her departure comes after it was revealed last month that she has amassed a $3 million property portfolio, despite describing herself as a trained Marxist”.
Cullors faced fierce backlash over revelations about her personal spending – including the recent purchase of a $1.4 million home in a ritzy L.A. neighborhood.
It caused many to question what percentage of BLM donations were actually going towards social justice programs, although there is no suggestion of any wrongdoing on the part of Cullors.
However, she insists her resignation has been in the works for more than a year and has nothing to do with the personal attacks she has faced.
‘Those were right-wing attacks that tried to discredit my character, and I don’t operate off of what the right thinks about me,’ Cullors told the Associated Press.
Last month, she described the criticism as ‘racist and sexist’ smears deliberately put out by the ‘right-wing media’.
The head of New York City’s BLM chapter has called for an independent investigation into the organization’s finances after revelations about the property portfolio surfaced.
‘If you go around calling yourself a socialist, you have to ask how much of her own personal money is going to charitable causes,’ BLM organizer Hawk Newsome said.
‘It’s really sad because it makes people doubt the validity of the movement and overlook the fact that it’s the people that carry this movement.’
Black Lives Matter protesters take to the streets of Los Angeles in October
‘TRAINED MARXIST’ PATRISSE CULLORS’ $3M PROPERTY PORTFOLIO
In April, Cullors raised eyebrows when it emerged that she had spent $1.4 million on a Los Angeles property – her fourth home, and her third in the city – in an overwhelmingly white neighborhood.
The plush property, located in Topanga Canyon, comes complete with a separate guest house and an expansive back yard.
Cullors and her husband also purchased a ‘custom ranch’ on 3.2 acres in Conyers, Georgia last year for $415,000.
The residence boasts its own pool and airplane hangar.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Cullors raised eyebrows when it emerged that she had spent $1.4 million on this residence in ritzy Topanga Canyon
CONYERS, GEORGIA: Cullors and her husband also purchased a ‘custom ranch’ on 3.2 acres last year
Additionally, property records show Cullors has bought two other Los Angeles homes in recent years.
In 2016, she is said to have paid $510,000 for a three-bedroom home in Inglewood.
In 2018, Cullors added another home to her property portfolio, by laying down $590,000 for a four-bedroom home in South L.A., the Post says.
The New York Post reported that Cullors was also ‘eyeing property at the ultra-exclusive Albany resort outside Nassau in the Bahamas where Justin Timberlake and Tiger Woods have homes.’ The publication didn’t cite sources for its information.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: According to property records, Cullors also owns this LA home
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Cullors also owns a third LA property
Cullors has made much of her money from consulting on racial justice projects outside of BLM
In 2020, the BLM foundation spun off its network of chapters as a sister collective called BLM Grassroots, so that it could build out its capacity as a philanthropic organization. Although many groups use ‘Black Lives Matter’ or ‘BLM’ in their names, less than a dozen are considered affiliates of the chapter network.
In April, the foundation stated Cullors was a volunteer executive director who, prior to 2019, had ‘received a total of $120,000 since the organization´s inception in 2013, for duties such as serving as spokesperson and engaging in political education work.’
‘As a registered 501c3 non-profit organization, (the foundation) cannot and did not commit any organizational resources toward the purchase of personal property by any employee or volunteer,’ the foundation said in a statement.
‘Any insinuation or assertion to the contrary is categorically false.’
Cullors has made much of her money from consulting on racial justice projects outside of BLM. In 2018, she also released a best-selling autobiography titled: ‘When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir.
Meanwhile, Cullors has also been paid an advance for her second book.
Cullors founded BLM with Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi in 2013, in response to the acquittal of George Zimmerman, who killed Trayvon Martin.