New video footage has emerged in the shooting death of Alton Sterling by a Baton Rouge, La. police officer on Tuesday. In one of the first clips to come out of the shooting, one officer could be heard yelling that Sterling has a gun. This latest video shows that Sterling didn’t in fact have a gun drawn when officers pinned him and shot him at point-blank range.
The Daily Beast has posted the 40-second cell phone video that shows this extremely upsetting incident taking place. It was provided by Abduallah Muflahi, who owns the convenience store where Sterling was shot. The two Baton Rouge police officers involved in Sterling’s death had responded to a 911 call claiming that someone was threatening people in the store parking lot. Muflahi says that Sterling wasn’t the one making threats.
Here’s how the Daily Beast describes the video:
Despite being pinned down, one of the officers fired a gunshot into Sterling’s chest. Less than a second later, at least three more shots were fired. One officer is seen removing an object — it’s unclear what, exactly — from Sterling’s right pants pocket.
Muflahi had previously told Maya Lau, the reporter who broke this story, that Sterling had a gun in his pocket, but he had not taken it out during the incident. This account, as well as this latest video, makes it very hard to believe that Sterling represented an “active threat” to Officers Blane Salamoni and Howie Lake. This makes Sterling’s death all-the-more tragic and the words of public figures like Jesse Williams even more relevant.
(Via The Daily Beast)