As police brutality grows out of control, Anonymous have rolled their sleeves up in preparation to avenge the killing of a fellow member

James Daniel McIntyre, who claimed to be a member of Hacktivist group Anonymous was shot by police on the 17th of July 2015 in Dawson Creek in British Colombia, Canada. The 43-year-old later died in hospital. Anonymous have promised retaliation in the form of Operation Anon Down.

Who are Anonymous?

Anonymous are a large group of online hackers who often work towards a common cause and are known to hack into various government websites along with sites belonging to large companies such as Sony. The structure, or lack of it, makes the organisation prone to infiltration, as they have no centralised power and work as equals rather than through a hierarchy. They are often represented by a Guy Fawkes mask which was popularised in the 2005 film, V for Vendetta.

Operation Anon Down.

Anonymous have promised to seek justice for their fellow hacktivist who has fallen prey to yet another case of police brutality in which the first step, if justice isn’t served, is to dox the officer involved. According to an interview with an associate of McIntyre by Vice.com the attack was believed by the associate to be targeted, however this cannot be confirmed. According to Canadian news site Nationalpost.com McIntyre is said to have been carrying a knife. An independent operation into the case is underway.

Although the killing was not due to race, the death of McIntyre builds up a strong case against security forces. Police brutality and the lack of accountability of officers is an issue which has been a topic of debate around the world. Clashes between citizens and police, such as the Tottenham riots in 2011 in the UK and the Ferguson movement in the USA (which Anonymous supported) have brought up questions about the power held by officers along with the argument of institutional racism.

An argument used by some sceptics over the existence of police brutality and prejudice is that a majority cannot be blamed for the actions of a minority. I personally have used this argument myself but after researching into cases of police brutality and people’s opinions on it, I came across a tweet by @DiggsWayne which provoked questions I had not yet thought of, he tweeted: ‘Someone made the point that good cops are judged wrongly on their uniform. How do you think it feels to be judged wrongly on your skin?’

Definition of police (noun) according to Google: the civil force of a state, responsible for the prevention and detection of crime and the maintenance of public order. So what happens if the same body that is responsible for the protection of the general public becomes a danger to it?  Not every police officer is the same as Darren Wilson, or the many others who are yet to be convicted of the murder of unarmed individuals, including the yet to be identified officer in the McIntyre case. But what if the same body that is supposed to prevent public disorder becomes the cause for it?