Davidson College graduate Mbye Njie shares how and why he came up the Legal Equalizer App that aims to keep both drivers and police safe during stops. Legal Equalizer App enables drivers who are pulled over or anyone else to record police actions and read briefs about their rights. With just a couple taps on the phone screen, video begins recording, local defense attorneys are just a speed dial away and an automatic text is sent to up to five pre-determined, trusted contacts. The text will say you’ve been stopped by police and give your coordinates.
Can you tell myself and the reader’s about yourself?
I was born in The Gambia which is the smallest country in Africa. I moved here at the age of 7, not speaking a word of English. I grew up in Macon, Georgia and I am a graduate of Davidson College class of 2004. I’m a huge sports fan, political junkie and all around nerd.
Growing up and still to this day who inspires you?
The answer remains the same on that one and that would be my stepmother, Dr. Catherine Meeks. She raised me from the age of 7 on up and has provided me with the educational background and the spirit that drives me to always try to help others and make the world a little bit better than I found it.
What influenced the idea of this app?
The idea for this app really came about from the different instances of police brutality and police killings that kept on and still to this day keep on occurring. It was after Eric Garner, Mike Brown, Tamir Rice and Sandra Bland had all gotten killed. I got tired of the arguments about what happened and wanted to create a product that could help make those encounters between police and civilians safer. I wanted to help people in situations where they got profiled and wanted to make them feel safer and more knowledgeable in these situations.
What are some of the benefits of downloading your app? Do you believe your app will aid in the saving of African American lives from police?
There are multiple benefits of downloading the app. The first would be the ability to alert five loved ones of your exact location in an emergency situation, whether it be a police stop, immigration encounter, domestic violence or other situation. The second benefit would be that the app provides you with your rights as well as laws for all the states. We include everything from Reckless Driving and Gun Laws to Marijuana laws for every state. The third benefit would be the ability to record the encounter so there is a recording of what happened. The fourth benefit would be the ability to call an attorney directly from the app that can help you in real time. That way, you have an actual legal professional helping you in this situation.
Is the evidence recorded by the app admissible in court?
The evidence recorded by the app would be admissible in court.
Is the app free to download and where can we download it?
Since creating the app has anything happened to yourself or a user that your app directly helped or altered the outcome positively?
We have had a user that recently told us that she got pulled over by Texas State Police and used the app to alert her loved ones as well as knowing her rights. We hope that we can get more stories of the app helping individuals out.
Any words of wisdom you would like to offer us millennials?
My words of advice to you would be to follow your dreams and let your passions drive you. You don’t have to fit the mold of what people expect you to become or to do. My life has been much better since I decided to fully engage in working on something that I am passionate about. I know I have friends and family who would love for me to go to a safe 9 to 5 job, but I’ve never been happier than I am now knowing that I am doing something that I fully believe in and something that I look forward to doing on a daily basis. Follow your dreams; it is your life, you deserve to live it how you want.