menopausebarbees
... the tales of two sisters

Dana lives in Seattle, and Tracie lives in Germany. We are businesswomen, writers and humorists. We write about life, dating, and today's modern women.

Licensed to Kill… Licensed to Steal

Let me preface this blog by saying I have the deepest respect for our public servants.  I witness the hard works of my friend, Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best, who literally faces the fires everyday. I am humbled by her dedication and strength to combat what I deem one of the hardest jobs in America.  Over the years, my faith has been restored by a faltered system as I have witnessed at work dedicated friends such as Nick Metz, former Aurora Police Chief, and family members, Rosa Melendez, retired Regional Director at U.S. Department of Justice.

However, today I’m sharing a very personal story about police privilege, which at a tender age nearly shattered my faith in a system designed to serve and protect us.

I was 16 and eager to get behind the wheel, so I acquiesced to running any errands my family deemed necessary.

It was the mid 1980’s, when I pulled into our family’s secluded private gated property and parked the Centaur, a limited edition convertible English roadster.  My father was a car collector and my siblings and I had access to all of his vehicles.   I share this because my father was admittedly flamboyant. He was constantly in the news, such as the article posted below here. But he worked hard and he was successful and he enjoyed the lifestyle so many of his white contemporaries were entitled to. This included building a swimming pool in our back yard and sending my sisters and me for private educations.  As a self made business man in the central district of the city, with a million dollar lake view primary residence and as a landlord with multiple apartment buildings, he, and my family therefore unfortunately were the target of police speculation. The speculation was that Daddy’s means were acquired by illegal and illicit activities such as dealing drugs during the Just say No campaign commissioned by Nancy Reagan in the 1980’s.

 

My father hailed from Detroit. His mother died when he was 17 and he was left to his own survival measures. He was street savvy and not one to suffer fools. He was smart, and although he was a talented musician, he made his wealth by investing.

He was outspoken and I still have trauma when I recall the numerous times Daddy’s unwarranted encounters with the police landed him in jail. Simple outings in one of his flashy automobiles would make him suspect, pulled over, and arrested for no reason. Today, no doubt, Daddy’s outburst and interactions would have easily made him a victim such as Rodney King or George Floyd.

Daddy and me in his 1979 Clenet limited edition roadster

 

I recall it was evening, most likely dinner time. Mama  would have one of her scrumptious meals simmering.  After blaring the stereo of my favorite  tunes in the car, 16 year old me strolled up the front porch.  I was shocked as I reached the front door and saw through the large glass window, contained in the family dining room my immediate and a few members of my extended family. A police officer let me in my home and ushered me to where my family was waiting, while swarms of other uniformed policemen foraged through our home. We were held for hours while the police ransacked each room in our house. They dumped out plants on the floor, emptied dressing cabinets, leaving the house in complete disarray. Including stealing, yes, stealing my parent’s jewelry.  As I reflect back on this night, I am grateful my father was not home when the raid occurred.  I shudder to think of what that encounter might have resulted in.

 

 

Mama in our living room circa the 1980’s.

Our family home circa the time the police raid occured

The following afternoon, after the disrespect, utter disruption of our lives, and robbery, my parents received an apology that the police had raided the wrong house. They weren’t looking for Gerald Frank, but a Frank Jenkins that lived up the street. I was 16. I learned that day that not all police are there to serve and protect.

The Menopausebarbees want George Floyd and his family to know, we are with you.  We see you. We feel your pain.  We know it wasn’t about drugs.

RIP #George Floyd

Seattle Times article May 11, 1985