Sharif Cousins, founder of the New Day Foundation, is currently in hospital after being shot in the chest by police in Frankley, Birmingham last Wednesday evening. News of Cousins’ shooting broke just weeks after the death of Edison in police custody.
Cousins, an ex-gang member from Handsworth, had set up the New Day Foundation to help prevent other young people from getting swept into gang culture. After serving almost 14 years in prison, Cousins set up the charity in 2011, with the intention of giving back to his local community and ‘make a difference’. Currently in Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Cousins’ condition is described as “critical and stable”.
The Independent police complaints commission
It has been reported that armed police were called to Frankley at 9pm in the evening after being notified of the possessions of firearms. Little has been officially reported surrounding the incident. The Independent Police Complaint Commission (IPCC) claim to be carrying out a “through, independent investigation.” A spokesperson added that investigators were conducting house enquiries and had gathered footage from the police body-worn video camera.
The incident is the third subsequent to the high-profile case of Edir Frederico Da Costa, known as Edson, in which he died in hospital six days after being held at Newham prison on June 15th. The case sparked substantial social media outrage with the formation of twitter hashtags such as #JusticeForEdison, as well as local outrage and protests at the lack of media coverage and transparency on the part of the police. A post-mortem was carried out on Edson, and the IPCC concluded that there were no injuries to suggest severe force was used by the police.
It was discovered that a 21-year-old man was arrested for suspected firearms offences, and two other men and a woman were detained on suspicion of drugs offences. The family of Cousins currently await a formal statement from the police regarding the incident.