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Today the District released body camera footage from a June incident in which D.C. police shot a man who they say raised a weapon at officers. Officials later determined the man was holding a BB gun.
In the first four minutes of the footage released, officers can be heard telling the man, later identified as 63-year-old Sherman Evans,to “drop the gun,” “drop the fucking gun,” and “put it down, put it down.”
“Come on sir, just put it down. We’ll talk, we’ll talk,” one officer says.
Around the four-minute mark, the officer wearing the camera appears to crouch behind a vehicle, obscuring Evans from the camera’s view. More than a dozen gunshots can be heard. The officer then rises and moves toward Evans, who is laying on the ground.
Officers then approach and handcuff Evans before turning him over from a facedown position. “He fucking raised it at us,” one officer says.
“I know he did,” another officer replies. Neither the moment of Evans’ shooting nor a view of him raising the weapon is visible in the video, which combines footage from two officers’ cameras.
The Metropolitan Police Department says officers from the Fourth District responded to a call at 10:22 p.m. on June 27 for “a man brandishing a gun.”
“Officers arrived on scene to find Mr. Evans holding a firearm,” a release states. “MPD officers ordered Mr. Evans to drop the gun over the period of several minutes. Mr. Evans refused to comply with numerous demands to drop his weapon. As a result, MPD officers discharged their weapons, shooting Mr. Evans, who was transported to an area hospital where he was later pronounced dead.”
Mayor Muriel Bowser‘s administration released the footage today after consulting with U.S. Attorney for D.C. Channing Phillips and D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine, according to a press statement. “The release of the footage has also been deemed in the public interest and is consistent with the goal of the District’s [body-worn camera] program, including creating broader accountability between law enforcement and communities and maintaining an open and transparent government,” the release states.
This post will be updated.