Off duty cop shoots and kills 18 year old in St. Louis
Here we go again. An off duty St. Louis cop. a veteran of 6 years on the force, shot and killed an 18 year old in an altercation that appears to be even more confusing than the Michael Brown affair.
Here's the account from the St. Louis Post Dispatch.
Teyonna Myers, 23, of Florissant, said Myers was her cousin.
“He was unarmed,” Teyonna Myers said. “He had a sandwich in his hand, and they thought it was a gun. It’s like Michael Brown all over again.”
Dotson, who came to the scene and gave an update to reporters after midnight, said the officer had been in a car when he saw three males in the 4100 block of Shaw Boulevard at about 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. One of the males started to run away but stopped. The officer did a U-turn and then all three ran. The officer drove through streets following them, and then he got out and chased them on foot.
Assistant Police Chief Alfred Adkins said the teen the officer was chasing jumped from some bushes and struggled with the officer.
Dotson said a physical confrontation escalated into gunfire.
The teenager had a gun and fired at least three shots at the officer, who returned fire, the chief said. The teenager attempted to fire more but his gun jammed, Dotson said.
The officer fired 17 times, he said. It is unclear how many times the teenager was struck.
Police said they recovered a 9mm Ruger.
Dotson did not identify the 18-year-old but said he "was no stranger to law enforcement."
The chief said he is unaware of any video that captured the shooting.
The officer, 32, is a six-year veteran of the police department, Adkins said. Police did not identify the officer.
Word of the officer-involved shooting quickly spread across social media, and crowds of angry people began showing up and flooded the streets.
The crowd numbered about 300 at its peak. Random gunshots fired by someone near Shaw caused many to scatter. At least two rounds of gunshots were heard near the scene.
Several police cars were damaged. A crowd surrounded a police SUV and someone kicked and broke a taillight. Someone in the angry crowd broke out a rear window of a police SUV as it drove away.
Police closed Grand between Russell and Interstate 44 before midnight. A tactical team showed up to order people out of the street. Some protesters were sitting in the road. Others marched north on Grand. They shouted, "Black lives matter."
Lots of questions, with few answers. To empty almost two clips into a suspect raises serious questions about the officer's actions. Certainly the policeman is entitled to defend himself. But reloading in the midst of a physical altercation with a suspect is something I cannot recall hearing before.
I'm not buying the mistaking a sandwich for a gun explanation. That strains credulity. Nor can witnesses be relied upon for the simple reason no one saw the entire incident, which apparently played out over several blocks. But it is right and proper to ask questions about this action, and find the truth of the matter.
Forensics should be able to sort most of this out. In the meantime, let's hope no one is dumb enough to light the powder keg and see St. Louis go up in flames.