US Police Release Video of Black Man They Shot 16 Times
Police in the U.S. state of Kentucky have released a bodycam video that shows officers firing 16 shots at a Black U.S. Army veteran.
Immediately after the shooting on Monday, one of the officers had claimed that the man they shot, Darnell Wicker, had " started kinda swinging around a bit, kinda came at us, so we shot." However, the new video shows that Wicker, who was hard of hearing, did not charge at them at all and was not given a chance to put down his machete-like blade. The Louisville police department released the video hours after the shooting on Monday, and the two officers, Taylor Banks and Beau Gadegaard, are on administrative leave.
Wicker’s two daughters released a statement Tuesday saying that the police chief’s “swift transparency was an act of good leadership that should not be overlooked.”
They also asked a series of questions on the shooting, including, “ How fast can one old man lunge at three able-bodied officers?” and “Why did it take so long to summon aid?” The family is asking for funds to pay for a funeral service since Wicker did not have life insurance.
Wicker served in the U.S. Army, where he was awarded six medals before being honorably discharged.
The video caused outrage on social media, with many pointing out that Louisville officers had previously diffused situations with armed white men. Wicker’s daughters acknowledged that they respect many officers in the department, but that “we ask that we don't allow our appreciation of the good officers to exempt those involved in this incident from the consequences of their actions.”
Sixteen shots became a rallying cry of Black Lives Matter activists in Chicago, where Laquan McDonald was killed with 16 bullets in November.