Detroit activist who gave birth behind bars will not be retried for gun crime

Siwatu-Salama Ra pointed unloaded gun at driver who rammed her, police say

DETROIT – The legal battle for a Detroit activist who was convicted of a felony when she pointed an unloaded gun at a driver who rammed her car is finally over after two years, officials said.

In 2017, Siwatu-Salama Ra was involved in an altercation with another woman and pointed an unloaded firearm in what she called self-defense.

Ra’s case drew outrage from community leaders. To this day, she says she felt her life was in danger, so she defended herself.

Ra was convicted and gave birth behind bars while wearing shackles. The community came together and fought for her freedom.

“I’m overwhelmed with love and the community that has surrounded me since the day of the conviction,” Ra said.

People sent 900 letters to the prosecutor on Ra’s behalf.

“Look at all this paper,” her attorney, Wade Fink, said. “This all went to Prosecutor Kym Worthy, asking to dismiss her case after her case was reversed by the Court of Appeals.”

On Friday, prosecutors dropped the felonious assault and firearms charges against Ra. She pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of brandishing a firearm, which means she won’t have to serve any more jail time.

“MY faith has been tested, my energy -- 2 1/2 years,” Ra said. “If they wanted two years out of me, they got it.”

Ra believes there’s a problem with the justice system.

“This is just the beginning of stopping, to me, the false confessions in order to stay free, right here in the city of Detroit, inside Wayne County,” Ra said. “That’s what I had to do today.”


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