Movie Opens Up Old Wounds for Oscar Grant's Mother

Wanda Johnson hopes "Fruitvale Station"movie will lead to a more equitable justice system

View Comments ()
|
Email
|
Print

    NEWSLETTERS

    Wanda Johnson hopes "Fruitvale Station" movie will lead to a more equitable justice system. Terry McSweeney reports. (Published Wednesday, Jun 19, 2013)

    At Thursday night's private screening of "Fruitvale Station" at Oakland's Grand Lake Theater , Wanda Johnson, the mother of Oscar Grant, will be watching it for the third time. She expects it once again to be painful.

    "It opened up old wounds again," she said. "It is difficult to watch still. The second time I'm pulling my hair down and covering my ears, knowing it all happened and I couldn't change anything."

    Johnson of course lived through the real-life events of Jan. 1, 2009 when her son was shot at the Fruitvale BART station by a BART officer who says he mistakenly pulled his handgun instead of his Taser. Johnson says several scenes make her cry.

    "On my birthday, telling Oscar to ride BART and not drive -- and he ends up being murdered," she said.

    Johnson hopes the movie will give the public a chance to know the real Oscar Grant -- a man who had his troubles, but who was trying to turn things around.

    "Showing people Oscar was a human," Johnson said. "He loved people --any type. Didn't matter what nationality you were. And that you can change."

    Johnson is even hoping the movie can lead to a more equitable justice system.

    "I'm just hoping like Dr. Martin Luther King said, we're all treated equal not like it is today," she said.

    "Fruitvale Station" opens to the public on July 12.