Killing County Second Opinion – the disturbing truth about policing can’t be ignored

By Jessica Fontaine
Published: February 5, 2023
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Killing County is a disturbing but necessary tale of police brutality in Bakersfield, California. The powerful nature of the series grips and angers viewers about institutional racism, becoming a catalyst for social change.

We provide a second opinion of the Hulu series Killing County Season 1, which does not contain spoilers.

Killing County is a true crime documentary series on Hulu. Executive produced by former NFL star and civil rights activist Colin Kaepernick and narrated by actor André Holland, the documentary reveals the shocking truth about Kern County police, who have a shocking record of killing unarmed residents.

Killing County Season 1 Review and Plot Summary

A revealing documentary series about the injustice caused by policing, Killing County will make you angry – and it should. It follows the unjustifiable deaths of Jorge Ramirez, David Silva, Jason Alderman, and countless others at the hands of police officers.

The series gives harrowing accounts from the grieving families of murdered residents in a dangerous town. From 2009 to 2019, 68 people in Bakersfield, California, were shot by police. 81% were people of color. Black people were 4x more likely to be shot by a B.P.D. officer. Latin people were 2x more likely.

When the family of Jorge Ramirez, an unarmed man, found out that he was shot and killed by police, they demanded answers. Killing County gives us the true story of the shooting that police tried to cover up.

33-year-old David Silva, who suffered from ADHD and anxiety, was found asleep on the sidewalk. What happened next was truly disturbing. Cellphone footage and graphic, gut-wrenching audio show the unforgivable violence inflicted upon Silva by multiple officers.

Killing County details police violence toward other unarmed victims, such as 22-year-old James De La Rosa and 73-year-old Francisco Serna, with brutal honesty and without holding back.

One of the most disturbing elements of the series is the revelation of the events that followed the killings. Officers made jokes about the victims, manipulated corpses, and made settlements with families to make the issues go away.


Is Killing County worth watching?

Killing County Season 1 is a frightening and astounding revelation about police officers who do the unthinkable. It holds them accountable for being man’s inhumanity to men, committing unjustifiable shootings, and joking about their victims.

The series details the disturbing pattern of policing in Bakersfield, where a high per capita rate of unarmed citizens are shot to death or otherwise die at the hands of police. Police chose to be judge, jury, and executioner for Bakersfield residents and would then tell the families to “have a good day.”

After all this, information and transparency were slow to be released. Police would refuse to answer questions, claiming the incidents were still under investigation. The families ended up with either no answers or lies unless they investigated the deaths themselves.

The violent, terrifying nature of the series is necessary to convey the systemic issue that exists in the world and the police officers who benefit from it. It also provides a sense of hope, as the victims’ families are adamant about getting justice. The town of Bakersfield still demands accountability within the police department.

In the words of former N.Y.P.D detective Marq Claxton, “It’s no accident that police agencies tend to put the story out and frame it in a particular way. And that kind of shapes the narrative moving forward.”

The narrative still continues today, with the recent killing of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols, a Black man who was kicked, punched, and pepper sprayed by police officers. Killing County reminds us of that. This issue is far from over. Powerful and raw, the series reminds us of the policies in place that allow police officers to use frequent deadly force with no accountability.

Killing County is incredible, emotional, and riveting. All audiences can benefit from the conversation that the series urges us to have.

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