Police Officer Guns Down Black Driver In Front Of His Girlfriend And Her Child

CREDIT: FACEBOOK/LAVISH REYNOLDS
CREDIT: FACEBOOK/LAVISH REYNOLDS

On the heels of Alton Sterling’s brutal shooting in Louisiana, which sparked national outrage, a 32-year-old man in Falcon Heights, Minnesota was shot and killed by police while reaching for his wallet.

Philando Castile was shot during a traffic stop Wednesday, after he was pulled over for a broken tail light by St. Anthony police officers. According to his girlfriend, Lavish Reynolds, officers instructed Castile to show his license and registration. As he was reaching for the documents, she said, Castile told the officers that he was in possession of a firearm and a concealed carry permit. Moments later, he was shot four times.

In a graphic video broadcast live on Facebook after the shooting, Reynolds calmly explains that Castile was following the officers’ orders, as her boyfriend bleeds out in the passenger seat. Her 4-year-old daughter watches from the back seat as the shooting officer yells and keeps his gun pointed at the car. More police officers arrive at the scene and yell for Reynolds to exit the vehicle.

With her boyfriend bleeding out next to her, Reynolds follows the officers’ commands. As she gets out of the car, the officers aim their weapons at her. She’s eventually handcuffed, ordered to her knees, and seated in the back of a police car.

At the end of the video, her 4-year-old daughter says, “It’s okay, Mommy. I’m right here with you.”

Watch it here:

Police

Posted by Lavish Reynolds on Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Castile was taken to the Hennepin County Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead.

The shooting officer has not been identified, but the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension has launched an investigation. Sgt. Jon Mangseth, the interim police chief for the St. Anthony Police Department, told the press that the officer is currently on paid administrative leave.

“[We haven’t had an] officer-involved shooting in, you know, 30 years or more. I’d have to go back in the history books, to tell you the truth,” Mangseth said.

Following the shooting, protesters surrounded Gov. Mark Dayton’s mansion.

According to the Guardian, Castile was the 561st person killed by police in 2016. The Washington Post reports that he was the 506th person fatally shot by officers this year.