These Three Teens Developed an App To Tackle Police Brutality


By Carolyn Tisdale

Police brutality against black people is and always has been a problem in the U.S.

This week, a grand jury in Ohio failed to bring charges after the merciless killing of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, a young boy who was gunned down by police in Cleveland during the fall of 2014.

There have also been several other high-profile cases over the last several years involving black people dying in the custody of police. However, in these cases and in other cases where blacks were murdered by police unarmed, no criminal charges were brought against the officers responsible.

But a story that unfolded in Georgia tells a bright side to the grim reality of police brutality. The unwavering injustices against black people have inspired three black youngsters to utilize their skills in technology to help make a difference.

Ima, 18, Asha, 15, and Caleb Christian, 15 (all pictured), created a digital app called Five-0. This app helps its user track interactions with law enforcement all across the user’s vicinity. Since the creation of Five-O, attention across the world of the app has rapidly spread.

This month, the three teens who created the app got a chance to travel to The Netherlands. In this European country, the three siblings were finalists in a competition called the Innovating for Justice Challenge. Technology is definitely a powerful tool in the fight against racial oppression.

It can serve as a useful alternative to traditional activism. Young people are great candidates for developing innovative ways to save lives in today’s dangerous times. “We started building Five-0 in the summer of 2014,” said Asha Christian in an interview with

“That’s around the time when the Michael Brown case, and the Trayvon Martin case and other serious police brutality cases were swirling around in the media,” Asha continued. Caleb Christian told For Harriet that a real-life experience also played a role in their inspiration to create Five-0.

“After the incident that happened to our family, we really talked to our parents because it was really scary. We talked to our parents and we really touched on all the issues that are happening in the media,” said Caleb Christian to For Harriet.

“They weren’t really happening to people that weren’t like us, that weren’t teenagers and that weren’t black,” he continued. It’s really a blessing that three young black teens came up with something positive using technology to save the lives of their fellow people.

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