Mayor Vi Lyles, pictured in January 2018, called on “all of Charlotte to come together respectfully” (Logan Cyrus)
Miami (AFP) – Video released on Monday showed the moment a US policeman shot dead a black man who appeared to be following instructions to drop his gun.
Officers in the city of Charlotte, North Carolina were ordered by a court to release the bodycam images captured by Wende Kerl, who killed Danquirs Franklin in a Burger King parking lot on March 25.
Franklin is seen in the footage squatting in front of an open car door while Kerl and another officer shout: “Drop the gun. Drop it. Drop it now.”
Franklin’s firearm is not visible at first. Then, he moves his right hand to his pocket and appears to take out a gun in order to put it down. Kerl fires multiple times.
“You told me to,” Franklin said, looking up, before collapsing on the floor.
Alongside a link to the video, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department tweeted it was “just one piece of evidence among many others to be considered in determining whether the shooting was justified.”
At a news conference Monday ahead of the video’s release, the city’s mayor Vi Lyles called on “all of Charlotte to come together respectfully,” whatever the footage may show.
Police chief Kerr Putney said authorities expected the release to result in demonstrations in the city.
“We are prepared for the worst but praying for the best,” he said.
Cases of US police brutality against people of color, and particularly black people, have become increasingly visible in recent years, sparking national protests.
In one of the most well-known cases, a white police officer killed Michael Brown — an 18-year-old black man — in Missouri in 2014.
Along with the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin in 2012 by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman, that case inspired the “Black Lives Matter” movement.
Disclaimer: Validity of the above story is for 7 Days from original date of publishing. Source: AFP.