The NFL’s social justice initiative ‘Inspire Change’ has made headlines on numerous occasions over the past few months. This week, it happened again.
On Wednesday the NFL honored 21-year-old Draesjon “Sean” Reed, a young man who was shot and killed by Indianapolis police back in May.
According to multiple reports, Reed drove recklessly on the interstate the day of his death as his car “almost struck other vehicles disobeying all traffic signals.” He live-streamed the entire chase on Facebook while singing along to music and laughing at the camera.
Reed ultimately ended up pulling into a parking lot, jumping out of his vehicle and engaging officers in a chase.
After the police found themselves unable to properly tase Reed, gunfire erupted. Reed fired at least two shots before an officer, Dejoure Mercer, returned fire.
At the time of his passing, Reed had three outstanding warrants — one for felony intimidation and two for stealing the gun he used.
Subsequent testing showed that Reed’s gun was forensically matched to shell casings from two recent drive-by shootings. Furthermore, text messages from his phone confirmed his involvement in the shootings.
After reviewing all the facts involved, a special grand jury in Indiana declined to prosecute Mercer for the shooting of Reed.
Despite all this, the NFL published a photo of Reed to Instagram with a quote from his mother saying, “He deserves justice! He was a human being, a son, a brother, and a friend. He is my son and I love him.”
The NFL’s caption for the Instagram post read: “Say His Name: Dreasjon Reed. Dreasjon is one of the many individuals being honored by players and coaches this season through the NFL’s helmet decal program.”
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Up to this point, the NFL has yet to respond to criticism regarding their Reed post.
Will that change at some point this week?
Time will tell.
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 17, 2020