Tulsa police have released a disturbing dash cam recording showing a police officer fatally shoot and kill an unarmed Black man, who had his hands up in the air.
On Friday night as his car stalled, Terence Crutcher was later tased by Officer Tyler Turnbough and shot and killed by Officer Betty Shelby, says The New York Daily News. Crutcher, 40, who had no weapon on him, was just on his way home.
While a female officer told dispatch that Crutcher wouldn’t “show me his hands,” according to the footage, he was walking back toward his car with his hands raised in the air. Crutcher even placed his hands on the side of his SUV. Not too long after, four officers surrounded him.
According to the Daily News, one officer said, “He’s got his hands up there for her now,” and another said, “Time for a Taser, I think.” Soon after, the first officer said, “I’ve got a feeling that’s about to happen,” and another one said, “That looks like a bad dude, too. Probably on something.”
Soon after, the father of four had been tasered and then shot, BBC News wrote. He was later pronounced dead at the hospital.
In a press conference on Monday afternoon, Police Chief Chuck Jordan told the crowd, “I’m going to tell you right now, there was no gun on the suspect or in the suspect’s vehicle. I want to assure our community and I want to assure all of you and people across the nation watching this: We will achieve justice.”
“The video is disturbing. It’s very difficult to watch. The first time I watched it, I watched it with the family,” he added.
Police also confirmed that they showed the Crutcher family the video before it was released to the public.
“We wanted them to see it before it was released so they wouldn’t be blindsided by it,” Tulsa police Sgt. Shane Tuell said. “We wanted to be able to have that intimate time with them, with their attorney, to see if they had any questions or concerns.”
Since the shooting, Crutcher’s family maintained that Terence didn’t have a weapon and had his hands up the entire time. His twin sister Tiffany told the press that she knows the released video will spark protests, but asks that they are peaceful. “Let’s protest, let’s do what we have to do, but let’s do it peacefully, so we respect the culture of our family,” she said.
She also wants for Officer Shelby to be arrested, saying that her brother’s life “mattered.” During a press conference, she also said that her brother’s life was lost due to “negligence, and the incompetency, and insensitivity” on the part of the police.
On Monday, federal prosecutors said that the FBI and the Department of Justice will conduct separate investigations into Friday’s shooting and that Jordan also asked the Justice Department to help Tulsa police with the investigation, the Daily News noted. Yet, Officer Shelby, has been placed on “routine administrative leave with pay” during the investigation.
As we now know, deaths like Crutcher’s are not new or rare. Since 2015, almost 400 African-American men have been killed by police or state violence. When will it end? When will our names stop being hashtags?
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty, Twitter