Slain officer’s widow, Maureen Faulkner, blasted Brown University on Tuesday. This was after she heard that the University was sharing the work of her husband’s killer in an art exhibit supposedly dedicated to voices of the mass incarcerated.
Maureen’s husband, Daniel, was killed in 1981 by Mumia Abu-Jamal. This happened when Daniel, a police officer, attempted to arrest his brother for traffic violations. According to reports, Daniel was shot several times and died from a headshot wound.
Witnesses also testified that the killer said, “I shot that motherfucker and I hope he does.”
He was convicted of the crime in 1982 and given the death sentence. However, some Philadelphia prosecutors dropped the death penalty case in 2011.
After hearing that the University decided to honor the killer by displaying his artwork, especially in such an event, Maureen was immediately angered.
The Ivy League school, where parents pay $85,000 per year to send their kids, invested an unknown amount of money buying the art of Mumia Abu-Jamal, who murdered Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner in cold blood in 1981.https://t.co/D0vt8l4AhU
— LawEnforcementToday (@LawEnforceToday) August 28, 2022
Speaking to Ashley Strohmier, she said she felt outraged and re-victimized after hearing about the University’s decision.
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She said, “I was 25 years old when my husband was shot in the back, and then he fell to the ground and lost his gun. He did shoot Mumia Abu-Jamal in the stomach, and then Jamal tracked him down and continued to shoot at him.” She added that he was not satisfied with those shots and even went as far as shooting him in his eyes.
Maureen continued, “This is what the young people at Brown University need to know, that this man caused our family heartache.“
According to a press release from the University, the collection from Abu-Jamal was about 60 boxes. Some boxes’ content included documents describing his trial and imprisonment. According to the Associated Press, the documents to Abu-Jamal were what “gained him global recognition as a face of the movement against the death penalty.”
Mumia Abu-Jamal was the face of the anti-death penalty movement in the U.S. for years. Now his personal archive, which filled his cell on death row, will help chronicle the carceral system as one of the most pervasive aspects of American life. https://t.co/xPBLIF4gsy
— The New York Times (@nytimes) August 24, 2022
Johanna Fernandez, who graduated from Brown University in 1993, also advocated for Jamal, contributing more documents to his collection. The University purchased all of these boxes and got extra donations which were all displayed in the library as though Abu-Jamal was an American hero.
Johanna said, “He is one distinct voice that, like more than two million nameless others, must be studied by future generations that wish to wrap their heads around the Goliath that is America’s prison industrial complex.”
Kenvi Phillips, director of library diversity, equity, and inclusion at Brown, also added that the collection was for educational purposes. He asserted that it would give students insight to see life within prison walls and understand the lives of incarcerated people.
However, The president of the Philadelphia Police Officer’s Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #5, John McNesby, asserted that the University was being very insensitive.
He said, “It’s unconscionable that not one person from the University reached out to Maureen prior to this announcement. Convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal should remain in prison for the rest of his life.”
Maureen has vowed to take it upon herself and see that justice is served. She has promised to find out how much Abu-Jamal received from trusts and reach out to the University.