Statement on brutal killing of Sayed Arif Faisal in Cambridge, Massachusetts
The Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC) is profoundly saddened and disturbed at the killing of Sayed Arif Faisal, a 20-year-old student who was shot multiple times by Cambridge Police while in the midst of a mental health crisis. This senseless, preventable tragedy further exposes the deeply biased and overly aggressive nature of policing in the United States.
Sayed Arif Faisal, who attended the University of Massachusetts Boston, had been seen inflicting self-harm when he was fatally shot in the chest by a police officer. It is devastating to see that Faisal, as a person of color, was treated as a threat by Cambridge Police despite clearly being in distress and in need of mental health support.
IAMC echoes calls from civil rights groups and activists who demand that every officer involved in the shooting be investigated and held fully accountable for their role in Faisal’s killing. The City of Cambridge and the United States as a whole should take immediate steps to fund crisis response teams, mental health support, body cameras for all police officers, and other means to protect the members of minority and marginalized communities from similar tragedies.
We express our deepest condolences to his family, who have lost their only son, and we stand in solidarity with all those who demand justice and accountability.