Longview, Texas:

The Police Execution of 17-Year-Old Kristiana Coignard

February 2, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


On January 22, 17-year-old Kristiana Coignard, who was white, walked into the otherwise empty lobby of the police department in Longview, Texas. Kristiana went to a red wall phone to talk to a police dispatcher. The Longview News-Journal reported that she told a police phone operator that she “needed an officer.” She hung up the phone and waited in the lobby.

Longview cop Glenn Derr walked into the lobby soon after Kristiana hung up and initiated the murderous series of events that ended her life. The Longview Police Department released a video of Kristiana’s murder-by-cop about a week after she was killed. It shows that Derr got in her face as soon as he came into the room. He backed her into a far corner of the lobby and shoved her onto a chair. He seemed to put his knee on her abdomen or chest while grabbing at her neck or head.

Derr then yanked Kristiana upright, only to grab her by her head, violently throw her to the floor, face down, and get on top of her. As soon as Derr got to his feet again, he pulled his gun and pointed it at Kristiana. Two other cops entered the lobby separately to this scene. Kristiana got to her feet after Derr got off her, and began moving towards him. The three pigs immediately unloaded their weapons at her.

Less than ten minutes after Kristiana had asked for help, she lay on the floor, shot “multiple times,” her life bleeding out of her. Kristiana Coignard came to the Longview Police Department looking for help; she found a death squad.

Longview police spokeswoman Kristie Brian initially told reporters that “When police arrived to assist her that’s when she confronted them. She did brandish a weapon. I don’t know what kind it was. She came at the officers and was shot.” The only truth in that statement is that Longview police shot the 17-year-old woman.

Brian claimed she could not “confirm the type of weapon” Kristiana Coignard supposedly had. Days later, Longview’s mayor and police chief said that Kristiana had a butcher knife tucked into her waistband and came at Derr with it. They also said Kristiana showed Derr that she had the words “I have a gun” written on her hand. As of this writing, no weapon of any type has been produced by the authorities. The pigs who gunned down Kristiana Coignard have been put on paid administrative leave.

Longview is a city of about 80,000, a couple of hours drive east of Dallas. A wave of murder by police has convulsed Longview and the East Texas area around it in the past year. In August 2014, 23-year-old Regan Marshall Wagner was on his way to work as a cook when he was stopped for an alleged traffic violation, shot, and killed by Longview police. In July, a sheriff’s deputy in nearby Cass County shot and killed 33-year-old Charles Alver Jones while serving an arrest warrant. In March 2014, 15-year-old Justin Aguilar, a football player who wanted to join the military when he got out of high school, was killed by Longview police, who claimed he tried to rob a quick mart. Candace Jackson and José Sifuentes were shot and killed in separate incidents in May, and in August Shawn Antonio Thompson was severely wounded by police and then charged with assault against a public servant.

And now, Kristiana Coignard has been added to the toll of people whose lives have been annihilated by the Longview police.

Heather Robertson, Kristiana’s aunt, told a reporter that Kristiana’s mother had died when Kristiana was four. Robertson said Kristiana had been struggling with severe depression, but “was only violent with herself.” She said Kristiana had tried to kill herself twice. Robertson said that Kristiana going to the police department “was a cry for help. I think they could have done something. They are grown men. I think there is something they are not telling us.”

Across this country, in large cities, small towns, and rural areas; in ghettos, barrios, and reservations; in playgrounds, on street corners, and in their police stations and jails, police routinely beat and murder people. Just as routinely, they get away with it—put on paid leave, not charged with anything, and provided counseling for their “stress.” These pigs “serve and protect” a system that thrives on the misery it brings to millions of people: a system that provides these killers not only with badges and guns but the “right” to murder and brutalize.

It is an unjust, illegitimate system.


Volunteers Needed... for revcom.us and Revolution

Send us your comments.

If you like this article, subscribe, donate to and sustain Revolution newspaper.