Police violence in the USA disproportionately impacts black Americans. However, most research exploring minority experiences assumes black ethnicity is monolithic and therefore elides experiences of African immigrants to the USA—a growing subpopulation. This interpretative phenomenological analytic study sought to capture and understand the views of African diasporans in the USA of police violence through open-ended interviews with ten adult participants. We used critical race theory as the primary conceptual lens and found four themes: otherness, perception of police, civic engagement and systemic racism. The results offer a counter-narrative that complicates normative categorisation of race in the USA. This work offers activists and social work practitioners a more nuanced understanding of racialised identity, and the concomitant vulnerabilities and resiliencies of African diasporans in the USA.