Friday, 4 September 2020

DC Police release bodycam footage showing moment cops shoot dead 18-year-old black man after he pulled a gun - sparking protests - as it's revealed the teen was a 'validated gang member'

Washington D.C. police have released bodycam footage showing the moment officers shot dead an 18-year-old black man after he allegedly brandished a gun during a police chase - sparking further protests across the city.  
Deon Kay died on Wednesday after he was shot in the chest by a Metropolitan Police officer identified on Thursday as Alexander Alvarez.  
Authorities said Kay was one of two people who fled on Wednesday afternoon when approached by uniformed cops investigating reports of a man with a gun near the 200 block of Orange Street.
Police Chief Peter Newsham said officers had seen a livestream video on social media showing the suspect with a gun and recognized him from 'previous contacts'. 
He said Kay was 'validated gang member' from the area and had had multiple brushes with the law in the past.
During the foot pursuit, Kay pulled out a weapon, prompting the officer to open fire in response, the MPD said.
Body camera footage released on Thursday has shed light on the events leading up to the fatal shooting which comes amid nationwide protests and calls for sweeping police reform.  Body camera footage released on Thursday shows the moment a Metropolitan Police officer shot dead 18-year-old Deon Kay (pictured) in southeast Washington D.C. on Wednesday.
The officer opened fire after Kay brandished a gun (left) police said
Body camera footage released on Thursday shows the moment a Metropolitan Police officer shot dead 18-year-old Deon Kay (pictured) in southeast Washington D.C. on Wednesday. The officer opened fire after Kay brandished a gun (left) police said
In an 11-minute video, cops are seen chasing Kay near an apartment complex before cornering him with their weapons drawn. The officer then opens fire, striking the teenager in the chest once and causing him to collapse
In an 11-minute video, cops are seen chasing Kay near an apartment complex before cornering him with their weapons drawn. The officer then opens fire, striking the teenager in the chest once and causing him to collapse 
The officer is heard telling the teen, 'Don't move! Don't move!' multiple times as Kay runs towards them with a gun in his hand before tossing the weapon '98 feet away' in the grass
The officer is heard telling the teen, 'Don't move! Don't move!' multiple times as Kay runs towards them with a gun in his hand before tossing the weapon '98 feet away' in the grass
In an 11-minute video clip, cops are seen chasing Kay near an apartment complex in southeast D.C. before encountering him with their weapons drawn.
The officer can be heard telling the teen, 'Don't move! Don't move!' multiple times as Kay runs towards them with a gun in his hand. He then tossed the weapon '98 feet away', according to police. 
Deon Kay, 18, was shot dead by police on Wednesday afternoon. Cops say they opened fire on the teen after he 'brandished a gun'
Deon Kay, 18, was shot dead by police on Wednesday afternoon. Cops say they opened fire on the teen after he 'brandished a gun' 
The footage shows the officer firing one round, striking Kay in the chest, causing him to collapse on the ground.    
The cop is then seen searching for the gun near a grassy area where it was thrown, as he explains what happened to two other cops as they arrive at the scene. 
It marks the first fatal police-involved shooting in D.C. since new police reform laws went into effect earlier this year.   
The incident is currently under investigation and the officers involved have been placed on administrative leave, per MPD policy.  
During a press conference on Thursday, Newsham said Kay was known to officers by name and had been involved in a number crime-related incidents as a juvenile. 
'I know he's a validated gang member from the area and I know that he has had multiple touches with the criminal justice system,' he said.
'This is a tragedy... to have any young person killed in the District of Columbia.
'I'm pretty sure Deon Kay fell through multiple safety nets before yesterday afternoon,' Newsham added.   
The police chief declined to elaborate on Kay's previous offenses when asked by a reporter.  
He also said the other man who fled during the incident escaped from police and remains at large.
Two other men, Marcyelle Smith, 19, and Deonte Brown, 18, were arrested and charged in Wednesday's incident. Smith was charged with carrying a pistol without a license and Brown was charged with no permit.
Two firearms were collected as evidence, including one 'ghost gun', according to Newsham. 
A ghost gun is a term for an unregistered firearm that cannot be traced with serial numbers or other identifying marks. The ghost gun recovered by officers did not belong to Kay, Newsham said.  
In the wake of the fatal shooting, friends of Kay paid tribute to the teen on social media, sharing photos of him posing with weapons
Kay is seen holding a gun in a video shared on Instagram
In the wake of the fatal shooting, friends of Kay paid tribute to the teen on social media, sharing photos of him posing with weapons
Kay had just turned 18 and had recently gotten into a high school equivalency program. He is pictured above with a friend
Kay had just turned 18 and had recently gotten into a high school equivalency program. He is pictured above with a friend 
A police statement on Wednesday included pictures of the handgun they say Kay had been carrying, as well of the gun of another of his companions who was arrested. 
In the wake of the fatal shooting, friends of Kay paid tribute to the teen on social media, sharing photos of him posing with weapons. 
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser addressed the shooting for the first time on Thursday after protesters gathered outside her home earlier this morning. 
'We know how tragic any loss of life is in our city and I'd like to offer my condolences to the family of Deon Kay,' Bowser said, adding that the city is 'still gathering all the facts.'
She said Kay's mother has been offered counseling support and was able to view the footage of the shooting before it was released.  
Earlier in the day, protesters gathered outside Bowser's Colonial Village home following a night of unrest in the District over the police-involved shooting.
At least a dozen members of the Sunrise Movement DC gathered at daybreak holding signs reading, 'Defund or Resign' and 'No justice, no sleep', demanding Bowser fire Metropolitan Police Chief Peter Newsham and defund the police department. 
Video shared on Twitter showed one protester speaking into a megaphone saying: 'If you don't defund the police then you shouldn't bother running for re-election.' 
It came hours after protesters staged a rally outside the mayor's home and the MPD's 7th District headquarters overnight. 
Activists from the Sunrise Movement rallied outside DC Mayor Muriel Bowser's home at daybreak on Thursday following overnight protests over the police shooting of Deon Kay
Activists from the Sunrise Movement rallied outside DC Mayor Muriel Bowser's home at daybreak on Thursday following overnight protests over the police shooting of Deon Kay
At least a dozen protesters gathered outside the Colonial Village home holding signs reading, 'Defund or Resign' and 'No justice, no sleep', demanding Bowser fire MPD Chief Peter Newsham and defund the police
At least a dozen protesters gathered outside the Colonial Village home holding signs reading, 'Defund or Resign' and 'No justice, no sleep', demanding Bowser fire MPD Chief Peter Newsham and defund the police
DC Mayor Muriel Bowser (pictured) who has backed the BLM movement, is yet to speak publicly on Wednesday's shooting
Chief Peter Newsham on Wednesday said it would be 'improper' to speculate on what prompted the officers to open fire, but he said two firearms were recovered from the scene.
DC Mayor Muriel Bowser (left) who has backed the BLM movement is yet to speak publicly on Wednesday's shooting. MPD Chief Peter Newsham (right) on Wednesday said it would be 'improper' to speculate on what prompted the officers to open fire, but he said two firearms were recovered from the scene. Body cam footage is expected to be released later today

The demonstrators can be heard in a video posted by N2Sreports chanting: 'If we don't get no justice, you don't get no sleep.'
They spent around an hour outside the property, arguing with cops who arrived at the request of a neighbor, before a larger police presence drove to the scene and they left. 
Police said Kay had been in possession of this gun
Police said Kay had been in possession of this gun
Following the shooting, the local Black Lives Matter affiliate called for immediate protests outside the MPD's 7th District headquarters, stating in a tweet, 'DC police murdered a black man today.' 
Earlier Kay's mother Natasha told The Washington Post: 'They took my baby, they just took my baby from me. I need my son back, I want my son back.' 
Kay, who had just turned 18, had recently gotten into a high school equivalency program, youth mentor Omar Jackson told the Post.
He said the teen 'was trying to navigate through this chaotic situation out here' and 'get himself together.'
'I feel bad. My job is to keep him out of situations like this,' Jackson said. 
The shooting comes as police killings of black people have sparked nationwide protests and calls for sweeping police reform.
Black Lives Matter D.C. on Wednesday tweeted: 'Don't let MPD control the narrative! Police lie! We're on our way.' Footage from the scene shows protesters confronting officers outside a police precinct.  
DC Council members reacted to the shooting on Twitter, demanding officials release bodycam footage to ensure 'accountability'
DC Council members reacted to the shooting on Twitter, demanding officials release bodycam footage to ensure 'accountability' 
Protesters confronted police officers outside of the 7th precinct to express their anger after Washington Metropolitan Police Department shot and killed a young black man in southeast DC
Protesters confronted police officers outside of the 7th precinct to express their anger after Washington Metropolitan Police Department shot and killed a young black man in southeast DC
The shooting prompted a late-night face-off between police and dozens of protesters outside a city police station
The shooting prompted a late-night face-off between police and dozens of protesters outside a city police station
The shooting happened Wednesday afternoon and comes amid nationwide unrest over police violence
The shooting happened Wednesday afternoon and comes amid nationwide unrest over police violence
Black Lives Matter protesters have gathered outside a police precinct in Washington DC after police shot and killed an 18-year-old black man Wednesday afternoon
Black Lives Matter protesters have gathered outside a police precinct in Washington DC after police shot and killed an 18-year-old black man Wednesday afternoon
Washington D.C. saw violent protests in the weeks following police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota back in May, and the chaos re-erupted last Thursday, the final night of the Republican National convention, when six officers were hospitalized in demonstrations across the city.
The unrest continued into Sunday night, with a group of heavily armored officers seen moving in on a hundred-strong crowd of protesters gathered at Black Lives Matter Plaza shortly before midnight. 

Last week, a large crowd of Black Lives Matter protesters also accosted white diners outside several Washington, D.C. restaurants, demanding that they raise their fists to show solidarity with the movement.
Footage showing the demonstrators aggressively yelling at one woman in the Adams Morgan neighborhood went viral on social media and sparked a widespread backlash. 
Metropolitan Police Department Chief Peter Newsham said of the shooting Wednesday afternoon that uniformed officers approached a vehicle, acting on information that there were weapons in a car in the area.  
The incident happened at around 4pm and comes amid nationwide unrest over police violence. The victim has been named Deon Kay, who just turned 18
The incident happened at around 4pm and comes amid nationwide unrest over police violence. The victim has been named Deon Kay, who just turned 18
Relatives identified the person killed as Deon Kay, who turned 18 years old last month
Relatives identified the person killed as Deon Kay, who turned 18 years old last month

Kay's aunt Marie McNeil, 57, said her nephew had told her he loved her when she last saw him Wednesday morning. 
Police had earlier tweeted: 'Preliminary information in reference to an MPD Officer Involved Shooting in the 200 blk of Orange St SE. An adult male was taken to a local hospital. 
A firearm has been recovered on the scene. Chief Newsham will provide an update momentarily.' 
The shooting comes a day after Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser said she fears the US is 'descending into a race war'. Donald Trump on Sunday told Bowser to start arresting people or have the National Guard sent in.
'Mayor Bowser should arrest these agitators and thugs! Clean up D.C. or the Federal Government will do it for you. Enough!!' he tweeted. 
It also comes in the wake of new police reform legislation in Washington, designed to bring greater transparency to such incidents.
In June, amid nationwide protests over the killing of George Floyd by police officers in Minneapolis, the D.C. Council passed emergency legislation requiring the MPD to release any body camera footage from any fatal shootings or use-of-force incidents within five days. 
The department must also release the names of the officers involved.
In July, the city released body camera footage from three separate fatal incidents dating back to 2018.

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