MIAMI, FL, February 17, 2015 – The Black Police Precinct and Courthouse Museum (BPPCM) will host a panel discussion on Tuesday, February 24th, from 7-9:30pm. The topics will include the Stand Your Ground law, recent use of mug shots in target practice and overall police relations in the community. The BPPCM is located at 480 NW 11th Street. The moderator for the evening is Dr. Jimmy Brown (Chief Jimmy Brown), retired Miami-Dade Division Chief, host of Chief Jimmy Brown show on WMBM. The distinguished panel includes Florida State Representative Dwight Bullard (District 39), Florida State Representative Shevrin Jones (District 101), Retired Lt. Archie McKay (BPPCM), Bishop James Adams (St. John Institutional Missionary Baptist Church), Troy E. Wright(Executive Director, Trayvon Martin Foundation) and Rene T. Gordon, Esq. The #Black Police Precinct and Courthouse Museum is a major place to visit for local, national and international tourists to learn about the accomplishments and struggles of pre-Civil Rights black officers.
In 1944, the Miami Police Department began a new era in law enforcement hiring the first five African-American police officers—Ralph White, Moody Hall, Clyde Lee, Edward Kimball, and John Milledge—who served and protected the Central Negro District now known as Overtown, Liberty City and Coconut Grove. Because of segregation, the officers could not operate out of the main Miami Police Station. So, they policed by walking and riding bicycles. There are even stories of arrested prisoners being taken to jail on bicycle handlebars, or by walking and even hailing rides from citizens driving by. They had no cars, no radio contact and, most of all, no headquarters, until 1950 when renowned Miami architect, Walter G. DeGarmo, designed the first and only Black Precinct and Courthouse in the nation. Today, it’s the only museum of its kind in the country.
The museum is open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Retired officers like Lt. Archie McKay, who served in the facility when it was a precinct, regale guests with stories and challenges of law enforcement during segregation. On the weekend, the museum becomes the backdrop for Vegas-style, Ball & Chain Weddings where couples “tie the knot” during ceremonies that are unique, fun and inexpensive.
The Black Police Precinct and Courthouse Museum is a 501©3.
Visit http://historicalblackprecinct.org for directions and more interesting facts about the venue and weddings.