'I absolutely carry that trauma': Triangle Black men share stories from interactions with law enforcement in wake of Chauvin trial

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Emmanuel Rhyant from Raleigh said in 2013 he was harassed by police in a yard, arrested and accused of a DWI offense, he says he never committed.

"So still to this day in Wake County I have a DWI on my record with a 0.00 breathalyzer test," said Rhyant. "I never felt so disrespected, humiliated, the whole nine. And the crazy part about it is -- we were just in the yard. We weren't doing nothing."

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Emmanuel Rhyant from Raleigh says in 2013 he was harassed by police in a yard, arrested and accused of a DWI offense, he says he never committed.


Donald Hughes said he was just 8 years old, playing at a park with friends in east Durham, when police swarmed them looking for a robbery suspect.

"Absolutely scary and definitely one of my earliest memories and interactions with law enforcement that has lasted these 25 years since that incident," said Hughes.

"Because you're 33 now and you still carry that trauma," ABC11's Tim Pulliam asked.

"Yes, I absolutely carry that trauma," said Hughes.

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Donald Hughes said he was just 8 years old, playing at a park with friends in east Durham, when police swarmed them looking for a robbery suspect.



After George Floyd's death, new police reforms have been implemented at the local level.

Raleigh, Durham and Fayetteville police departments, along with the Durham Sheriff's Office state in their policies that chokeholds are considered a deadly use of force.

Chokeholds considered 'deadly use of force' in many local police departments
Raleigh and Durham both adopting the 8 Can't Wait Campaign by Project Zero reducing police violence, which includes exhausting all measures before shooting and a duty to intervene.

The NC Associations of Chiefs of Police is lobbying lawmakers to reform policing statewide.

The group presented similar proposals to 8 Can't Wait, including implicit bias and de-escalation training.

"If it's going to become mandatory, there needs to be a funding mechanism with that," said Jeff Smythe, chief of Burlington Police and first vice president of the NC Associations of Chiefs of Police. "And personally I would just push to the legislature and say, 'What's it worth? What's the value placed on human life that we are going to save by participating in these training initiatives?' By creating the right reinforcement procedures and the right mechanisms in our police department. You can tell me I can do that. But you need to fund that."

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Jeff Smythe, chief of Burlington Police and first vice president of the NC Associations of Chiefs of Police, speaks about efforts to reform policing in North Carolina.



Right now, the organization says it's unclear if or when the legislature will act on their proposal.

Derek Chauvin verdict: Jury finds ex-cop guilty of murder, manslaughter in George Floyd's death
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