See the full video of the fatal shooting by police of Kajieme Powell
St. Louis police have released cellphone footage of the shooting of a 25-year-old black man that appears to conflict with their description of the story. On Tuesday, police shot and killed Kajieme Powell after he was accused of stealing energy drinks and donuts from a convenience store. Police Chief Sam Dotson said Powell had been shot three or four feet from the officers after brandishing a knife in an “overhand grip” and refusing repeated orders to drop it. But the cellphone video shows Powell appears to be further away than that, and has his hands at his side. It also shows police shot Powell within about 20 seconds of arriving at the scene. The shooting happened about three miles from where Michael Brown was killed.
During a follow-up interview with CNN, Dotson acknowledged the discrepancies between his previous statement and the video, but still defended the officers’ use of lethal force.
“So you’ve got an individual armed with a knife, who’s moving towards you, not listening to any verbal commands, continues, says ‘Shoot me now, kill me now.’ Tasers aren’t 100%. If that Taser misses, that subject continues on, and hurts an officer,” he said.
The crowd of approximately 200 people that gathered at the scene of the shooting reportedly fluctuated from peaceful to rowdy, chanting the “Hands up, don’t shoot” refrain made well-known at Ferguson protests. Witnesses of the shooting of Michael Brown say the unarmed 18-year-old said this to an officer before he was fatally shot in Ferguson on Aug. 9.