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📣 TODAY 5 pm: Justice for Edson Rally / 🗳 Elect Black Women to City Council!

Dear Mayor Madden
Dear Mayor Madden
Friends, it has been a little while since our last newsletter, sent back in June. Most urgently: there is a rally in front of City Hall tonight, starting at 5pm, as part of the ongoing struggle for justice for Edson Thevenin and his family. Below I am sharing a message from Angela Beallor about the situation, and a press release with more information.
WHEN: Thursday, August 19th. Gather at 5:00 PM. Press conference at 5:30 PM.
WHERE: Troy City Hall Steps, 433 River Street, Troy, NY 12180
In Angela’s message you can read about how Troy’s all white City Council remains allergic to accountability and justice. We need to elect better reps, people who are more representative of the communities they serve.
This is Dan Phiffer writing the intro and I’m helping out on two campaigns for amazing Black women running for office this November. Marketa Edwards in District 6 and D. Colin Charlestin in District 1.
Donate if you can afford it, but more importantly reply to this email if you want to get involved. We need all kinds of help: childcare, social media, door knocking, get out the vote, spreadsheets. These are small campaigns so any additional help really makes a difference. Now I will pass it off to Angela…

A banner on Oakwood Community Center, April 17 2021. Say his name: Edson Thevenin.
A banner on Oakwood Community Center, April 17 2021. Say his name: Edson Thevenin.
Hello everyone,
I hope this finds you well. I am hoping you can join us in front of Troy City Hall on Thursday August 19th at 5PM.
The Troy City Council Finance Committee will be voting on Ordinance 75 authorizing a financial settlement in the case of Cinthia Thevenin vs. City of Troy et al. The Insurance company will pay the bulk of the settlement while the City of Troy will once again pay out money to settle when a Troy police officer has wronged a community member.
In April 2016, Officer Randall French murdered Edson Thevenin. The City of Troy has been embroiled in a cover-up scheme since the early morning hours when this murder occurred.
The City of Troy attempted to have this lawsuit dropped. Instead, judges insisted that, not only should the case proceed in court, but that due to significant questions of fact, this case should be heard before a jury. Rather than face a jury, the City of Troy is choosing to settle.
I cannot imagine what it is like for Cinthia Thevenin and her two children. They should receive this settlement. However, the City of Troy and Troy PD should be held accountable in this case.
As a part of the Finance Committee Agenda, Ordinance 75 is accompanied with a dubious Memorandum of support. It is unclear who wrote this (the City of Troy’s legal counsel?) but whoever it is is attempting to sear into the public record an untruthful account of this case. One that continues to let the City of Troy and Troy PD completely off the hook on this case.
The narrative that they are attempting to codify once again is simply false. Officer French lied about what happened that night and the City of Troy continues (to the bitter end) to push claims disputed by former Troy Police Officer Centanni’s report, by the autopsy report, by the bullet trajectory analysis, by the car trajectory analysis, by the NY Attorney General’s office, and most recently, by judges weighing the City of Troy’s calls for trial dismissal.
The City of Troy has been disrespectful to the Thevenin family and continues to refuse to acknowledge, or take responsibility for, their role in this appalling coverup.
Rally Calls for Accountability in Thevenin Case
Troy Residents are rallying together to support the Thevenin family and to call for accountability in the 2016 Troy Police Department murder of Edson Thevenin 
TROY, NY - Today, Thursday August 19th, residents of Troy, NY will gather outside of Troy City Hall to call for accountability and justice in the 2016 murder of Edson Thevenin by Troy Police Officer Randall French.
The Troy City Council Finance Committee will be voting on Ordinance 75 authorizing funds for a financial settlement in the case of Cinthia Thevenin vs. City of Troy et al. The City of Troy continues to deny any accountability, seeking a settlement rather than facing a jury trial of this case.
Earlier this year, U.S. Magistrate Daniel J. Stewart, citing eyewitness testimony, stated there was enough material question of fact to bring this case before a jury. In March 2021, a three-judge panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the City of Troy’s desire to dismiss the case and affirmed that the case should go before a jury.
A memorandum, part of the Troy City Council agenda item for Ordinance 75, attempts to solidify and codify a narrative of this case that is simply false. Officer French lied about what happened that evening and the City of Troy continues to push claims disputed by Officer Centanni’s report, by the autopsy report, by the trajectory analysis, by the NY Attorney General’s office, and, most recently, by judges weighing the City of Troy’s calls for trial dismissal.
A coalition of local organizations and residents will gather before the Finance Committee vote on Ordinance 75. Speakers – including Gertha Depas, mother of Edson Thevenin, Luz Márquez Benbow (Troy 4 Black Lives), Tasheca Medina (Equality 4 Troy), Daquetta Jones and Jessica Ashley (Justice Center of Rensselaer County), and more— will speak in support of the Thevenin family, for the funding of community support services, for an end to police violence, and  to continue our calls for justice and accountability in the murder of Edson Thevenin.
WHO: Troy 4 Black Lives, Equality 4 Troy, Justice Center of Rensselaer County, Reimagine Troy, and Troy community members
WHEN: Thursday, August 19th. Gather at 5:00 PM. Press conference at 5:30 PM.
WHERE: Troy City Hall Steps, 433 River Street, Troy, NY 12180
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Dear Mayor Madden
Dear Mayor Madden

We are here to hold you to doing better, to support you in doing better, in understanding that all lives can’t matter until Black lives truly matter.

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