City Council - Aug. 9, 2019
City Council Member Denise D. Adams today released the following statement about the shooting death of Julius R. Sampson Jr. on Aug. 6:
"This week we lost a beloved and valuable member of our community. Julius "Juice" Randolph Sampson Jr. was a son, husband, father, and businessman. The love, respect, and deep regard so many in our community had for Mr. Sampson has been readily apparent in the anguish and grief so many have expressed in recent days.
"The loss of a man like Mr. Sampson would be tragic if he was taken by a long illness or unexpected accident, but that is not what claimed his life. Our beloved "Juice" was ripped away from his new wife, his young family, and his caring community by an act of senseless violence. We do not know all of the details, but there are a few uncontested facts. In the middle of a sunny Tuesday afternoon, Robert Granato allegedly took out a gun in a public place and took the life of Julius Sampson. This is not a tragedy. This is a travesty.
"Justifiably, the community has serious questions. All leadership in the city, including our chief of police, must commit to fully investigating the circumstances leading up to this senseless killing. We know a black man was publicly shot to death in our city. We know the alleged killer is a white man. We know social media postings from the alleged killer indicate he may harbor or support white supremacist views. We know this killing took place just days after a highly publicized, and bigotry-motivated slaughter in El Paso, Texas. These known facts cannot and do not prove exactly what happened on Tuesday afternoon. However, these circumstances raise vital and reasonable questions. Our city's leaders are obliged to seriously and fully investigate these circumstances to ensure justice for Mr. Sampson and the safety of our broader community.
"As a member of the city council I pledge to work to get the answers we must have. I ask all the residents of Winston-Salem to hold me accountable to this pledge and to hold accountable all the political and law enforcement leadership of this city to pursuing a clear, transparent, and just process. Mr. Sampson, his family, and our city deserve no less."