Officers in US killed unarmed Black man in hail of bullets

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Video released on Sunday showed eight police officers in Akron, Ohio, were involved in a shooting that killed an unarmed Black man whose body was found with some 60 gunshot wounds after he fled a traffic stop last week.

Police played multiple videos at a news conference, one of which they said showed a gunshot being fired from the car driven by Jayland Walker, 25. He fled in his car after officers attempted to pull him over for a minor traffic violation.

After a chase of several minutes, Walker jumped out of the car and ran from police, the video showed. Police say it appears he was turning toward officers, who at the time believed he was armed. A gun was later recovered from his car.

On Sunday, the attorney for the Walker family, Bobby DiCello, told reporters he was “very concerned” about the police accusation that Walker had fired at officers from his car, adding that there was no justification for his violent death.

“They want to turn him into a masked monster with a gun,” DiCello said. “I ask you, as he’s running away, what is reasonable? To gun him down? No, that’s not reasonable.”

DiCello urged the public to be peaceful in protests against Walker’s killing, adding that it was the wish of Walker’s family to avoid more violence.

The shooting was the latest in a spate of killings of Black men and women by law enforcement in the United States that critics say are racist and unjustified, including the 2020 murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis that ignited global protests against police brutality and racial injustice.

On Sunday, the Akron chapter of National Association for the Advancement of Colored People led a peaceful protest at city hall. Hundreds of demonstrators marched in the streets of the city of about 200,000 people, waving “Black Lives Matter” flags and chanting, “We are done dying,” and “Justice for Jayland.”

 

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