Law enforcement, Kappa Alpha Psi, and African-American youths talk about disconnect with police

ST. LOUIS (KPLR) - Miguel Reynolds is a senior at Cardinal Ritter Preparatory Academy and president of The Kappa League, an organization for school-aged boys led by the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. He had a tough question for police.

'Why do you think there is so much terror and so much excessive force used when it comes to detaining African-Americans?'

'There is no secret,' said St. Louis County Police Officer Shanette Hall. 'There is somewhat of a disconnect between law enforcement, particularly between men -- young black men.'

Officers who are members of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, or NOBLE, met Saturday with pre-teen and teenage boys. At Harris Stowe State University, the Kappas hosted a panel discussion called Learn 2 Live.

'We do three different mock scenarios,' explained Kappa National Board Member Jimmy McMikle. 'We actually get kids and engage them in the scenarios so they learn what to do and what not do to from a black cop`s perspective.'

One teen in the group had already planned to tell officers that he had autism. Reynolds offered a different perspective on the issue. His late grandmother was an East St. Louis Police officer.

'[Police officers] are just as scared as we are. So, it takes both you and the police officer to find that middle ground of cooperation in order to proceed with your day and his or her day.'

Missouri State Highway Patrol Captain Ronald Johnson helped calm a torn Ferguson after Michael Brown was killed by a Ferguson officer. Captain Johnson wanted the students here to walk away with this:

'How many things we have in common, that we were young men and we made mistakes. We`ve also done some great things and that they can achieve some great things and they have value.'

Learn more about the National Organization for Law Enforcement Executives, visit http://www.noblenational.org/home.aspx.