New York State Trooper Charged In 11-Year-Old Black Girl's Death

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"She could make anybody laugh, it doesn't matter how you felt and it hurts that we don't have that no more," the mother of 11-year-old Monica Goods, Michelle Surrency said. "We were robbed and it's not fair. It's not fair."

Surrency lost her daughter last December after a New York state trooper pulled over the family's car for a speeding violation. Good's father was driving at the time, the family on their way home after visiting relatives for the holidays.

The father allegedly the traffic stop after the cop sprayed pepper spray into the vehicle, leading to a chase. That's when New York state trooper Christopher Baldner struck the family's SUV from behind two times, slamming the car into a guardrail before it flipped.

Monica was ejected from the car and pronounced dead at the scene. Surrency says her other daughter who was in the car at the time has suffered emotional trauma and will never be the same.

"Police officers are entrusted to protect and serve, but Trooper Baldner allegedly violated that trust when he used his car as a deadly weapon and killed a young girl," Attorney General Letitia James said. "While nothing will bring Monica back, we must hold law enforcement to the highest standards, which is why my office is committed to seeking justice in this case."

Baldner was indicted Wednesday (October 26) on murder and manslaughter charges and reckless endangerment for his role in the fatal crash. According to documents, Baldner had been involved in two previous incidents where he rammed his police car into other vehicles from behind.

"Clearly this state trooper never should've been on duty at the time this happened," attorney Sanford Rubenstein said. "Apparently there was a pattern here of him using this technique to ram cars."

Baldner was suspended from the state police force without pay after surrendering to authorities.

Reading about Black trauma can have an impact on your mental health. If you or someone you know need immediate mental health help, text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor. These additional resources are also available: 

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255

The National Alliance on Mental Illness 1-800-950-6264

The Association of Black Psychologists 1-301-449-3082

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