A short video has gone viral online in which many police officers were seen spraying bullets on a black man they were trying to arrest in the city of San Francisco on December 2.
The incident happened in the Bayview neighborhood, southeastern part of the city in front of many witnesses. The man died instantly from the bullets wound. The incident was said to have been recorded by a bystander.
According to what is seen in the video, at least about eight police officers surrendered the man, pointing their guns at him. The man appeared to be dazed, and wanted to escape the officer. And as he tried to move away from the officers, they pulled their triggers, discharging many bullets on him. The people witnessing the incident were heard crying and screaming at the nature of brutality by the officers.
The police claimed the man was holding a knife. It is said a stabbing incident had happened in the area, and police claimed the victim they killed matched the description of the suspected man wanted for the stabbing incident.
An eyewitness told local media that police blocked off the intersection of Third Street and Gilman Avenue in the city. Trains service was also said to have been halted just because of the hunt of the suspected stabber.
San Francisco Police Department Chief, Gregory Suhr said officers fired beanbags at the man, and used other non-lethal force before they opened fire. But his account cannot be independently verified.
An unnamed local resident who witnessed the incident told the Daily Beast that the man was just murdered by the police.
“It looks like an execution. It is very horrible and disturbing. This is why we need the cameras and the video”, the resident said.
The Filming Cops also reports that the incident is a murder, and that the victim was trying to walk away from the police with his hands by his side when the officers opened fire.
As at the time of filing this report, the victim has not been identified. But we will bring an update of his identity when it is available.
Many people who have watched the video have questioned why more than eight police officers will open fire on a single man they claimed was wielding a common knife. Some activists have called for the officers to be investigated, but the police department has not yet responded. Others too have suggested all guns should be taken from the police nationwide.
Just two days before this incident, Chicago cop Jason Van Dyke was arrested and charged with first degree murder. The charge came after footage of him shooting a black teenager, Laquan McDonald 16 times on the night of October 20 2014 was made public. The footage was made public by an order of a judge.
Hundreds of protesters took to the streets within hours of the video’s release, chanting “16 shots” and forming human blockades across roads in the city’s West Side. Other demonstrators gathered outside police stations as at least two people were arrested in connection to the protests.
Chicago police chief, Garry McCarthy was later sacked over his handling of the case while Mayor Rahm Emanuel now faces pressure to stand down over the incident.