Miami Beach Police

John O'Connor / WLRN

Two Miami Beach officers are no longer on the force after an investigation found they had sent hundreds of emails that included pornographic or racist images.

And prosecutors are looking into whether one of the officers broke the law by emailing an autopsy photo to colleagues or someone outside the agency.

 

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On Friday, March 21, Fort Lauderdale police fired three of its officers for "racist text messages exchanged among themselves and 'former police officers.'"

That was only the latest in a string of incidents involving race, police and the communities they serve.

Scroll below to see a timeline of these events.

Wilson Sayre

About 75 people gathered in downtown Miami Thursday evening to protest and stand in solidarity against the killing of Michael Brown. The black teenager was shot and killed Saturday by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri.

A group called the Dream Defenders and other activists marched a few blocks to the James Lawrence King Federal Justice Building, chanting lines like "hands up, don't shoot."

The Miami protesters empathized with Ferguson residents, having just passed the first anniversary of the death of Israel "Reefa" Hernandez's death at the hands of police.

Group Rallies A Year After Israel "Reefa" Hernandez's Death

Aug 7, 2014
Peter Andrew Bosch / Miami Herald staff

Jacqueline Hernandez-Llach hides her face behind a sign which reads “One year later... still no justice for Reefa.”

Her green eyes can’t keep the tears from rolling down her face as she begins to speak Wednesday night at the vigil for her son, 18-year-old Israel Hernandez-Llach.

“I can’t believe that it’s possible for 12 months to have gone by without any new information,” she said. “Every day that goes by I feel more pain, I think that State Attorney Katharine Fernandez Rundle wants to let the situation fade away.”

Hillary Lindwall/WLRN

Friends of Israel "Reefa" Hernandez held a news conference in response to his autopsy report released last week, seven months after his death. The teen died in August after being shot with a stun gun by Miami Beach police when he was caught defacing an abandoned building. The autopsy report says Hernandez's death was "accidental through electrical discharge." Now, the State Attorney's office must finish investigating before they can decide whether or not to press charges in the death. 

 

Governor Rick Scott kicks off the legislative session with a State of the State address touting tax cuts and job creation. The state legislature starts by advancing a bill legalizing a form of medical marijuana and passing tougher sex predator laws.   

A medical report on the death of Israel Hernandez, the teen who was tasered by Miami Beach police, finds that he died of a "sudden cardiac death." Shortly before the report's release, the police chief resigns.

We also hear the latest developments on the protests in Venezuela.

MIAMI HERALD / file

Relatives of Israel Hernández-Llach, the teen who died after being shot by a Taser stun gun, will announce Tuesday that they are suing the Miami Beach Police Department.

RELATED: Israel Hernández: The Life Of A Local Artist Cut Short

The death of the 18-year-old street artist has drawn widespread headlines and reignited debate over the use stun guns by law enforcement.

Al Diaz / Miami Herald Staff

On The Florida Roundup, a week after a fatal tasering by Miami Beach Police, graffiti artist Israel Hernandez is buried. Michael E. Miller of the Miami New Times, who broke the story about Hernandez’s death, will talk about police conduct and the safety of tasers.  

Governor Rick Scott wants Georgia to stop taking so much water. He and U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Bill Nelson (D-FL) visited Apalachicola this week to point out damage to the area’s oyster harvest caused by Georgia’s taking of water that could be replenishing the bay there.  

Marsha Halper / Miami Herald Staff

The death of 18 year-old graffiti artist Israel Hernandez-Llach has brought renewed attention to the Miami Beach police department.  Police tasered Hernandez on Aug. 6 after he spray-painted the wall of a shuttered McDonald's restaurant on Collins Avenue and 71st Street.   

People have died from being tasered, though according to a 2011 Justice Department report, it is rare.

The problem, says Julie Brown of the Miami Herald, is that the “Miami Beach police have had a history of using excessive force.”