Mbye Njie got pulled over three times within a week-and-a-half back in 2014 for “driving while black.” Aside from his own experiences with police, the incident in Ferguson with Mke Brown and the deaths of Tamir Rice and Eric Garner were fresh in his mind.
Growing frustrated with repeated stops, Njie and his friends decided to educate themselves on their rights. They printed out a copy of the Bill of Rights for North Carolina and the county where they attended college. Whenever they got pulled over, they were better educated on how to handle the stops.
Njie didn’t want to become another casualty of police brutality, so he decided to do something about it. From his personal experiences, he created the Legal Equalizer app.
Legal Equalizer is a mobile application that allows you to record a police encounter, notify five of your pre-selected contacts in an emergency, and give tips on interacting with police. The app is free and available for download on both Android and iOS.
“It’s accountability on all sides for everybody,” Njie said to CBS Local’s Ryan Mayer in an interview.
“If the officer pulls you over for speeding, gives you a ticket, and lets you go, great job, officer,” he added. “If the officer pulls you over for speeding and starts asking you what you are doing, why you’re in the neighborhood, where are you going, all those other questions, that’s not why he pulled you over.”
With the app, you would now have five witnesses to the officer’s behavior as well as a recording.
Aside from traffic stops, the app gives you the option to alert contacts for instances of domestic violence, immigration raids, active shooter situations, and general emergencies.
Drawing from his own experience, Njie added law from all 50 states and “your Bill of Rights,” he told The Moguldom Nation in an interview.
Njie hopes that the app will feature attorneys from all 50 states to connect with users in need within five years.
He also hopes to take the app globally, noting that these issues are not exclusive to the United States, and hopes to help users in Latin America and Africa.