Eight police officers in Akron, Ohio, fired nearly 100 bullets into Jayland Walker, a 25-year-old black man after they attempted to pull the car he was driving over shortly after midnight. Walker hit the accelerator resulting in a high-speed chase. Then Walker attempted to flee on foot and, according to police, fired a gun. weapon.
According to the Akron Police Department Facebook page, “actions by the suspect caused the officers to perceive he posed a deadly threat to them. In response to this threat, officers discharged their firearms, striking the suspect.”
He died shortly thereafter.
No gun was found on Walker after he was killed, however, but a gun and multiple shell casings were recovered from his vehicle by police. (They say.) So far, it is a puzzle why Walker fled, as he had no police record and wasn’t being sought for any crimes. Meanwhile, the Walker family’s attorney, Bobby DiCello (I guess Ben Crump didn’t get to Akron on time) said,
“I’m going to say this to any police officer that wants to avoid accountability: It will not stand. We will get to the bottom of what occurred. We absolutely will. You can’t take the 5th. You can’t hide. You can’t band together arm in arm and pretend that what just happened didn’t happen or was all Jayland’s fault.”
Akron is just assuming there will be riots; after all, Black Lives Matter has been exposed as a scam and needs a distraction. The city has has canceled its Rib, White, & Blue Festival and closed down the courthouse yesterday. A walk and rally held by the Akron NAACP is scheduled for Sunday at 3 p.m. Akron police will show the bodycam video during a 1 p.m. press conference on July 3 and release it publicly afterward.
1. There should have been no demands for justice or angry words from any lawyers, nor protests or marches scheduled by BLM, the NAACP or anyone else until the facts were settled and the the bodycam footage had been seen. But the whole idea is that any police killing of any black suspect under any circumstances is automatically a cause for recriminations against the police, white citizens and the United States generally, and the facts don’t matter. That’s where the metaphorical needle is stuck.
2. It appears that, once a again, sequence of events leading to the death of a young black suspect was set in motion by the suspect resisting arrest. Why is the learning curve so flat for this?
3. I assume—but at this point, everything is an assumption—that the reason the city is waiting so long to release the footage is that it looks like Sonny Corleone assassination in “The Godfather.” This was one tough kid: reports say he died after the shooting stopped. Taking the emotion and the “Ick Factor” out of it, though, what difference does it make how many times Walker was shot, or how many cops shot him? He’s just as dead as he would have been if a single shot had hit him right between the eyes. The media emphasis on the number of shots is sensationalism and appears to be a deliberate effort to inflame passions. The most relevant question is “Did he really have a gun and appear to threaten police with it?” The number of shots is like the detail that Mike Brown’s body was left lying in the street in Ferguson for as long as it was. It’s not germane to whether the shooting was justified or not, but it will be used to ramp up anger and hate.
4. I’ve seen too many movies, I guess (and had to deal with too many fact-shading cops when I was prosecuting criminal cases), but the fact that no weapon was found on Walker but a gun and casings were claimed to be found in his car sounds awfully suspicious to me.
5. Most of the media accounts make a big point of the fact that Walker’s death has been ruled a “homicide” without explaining that the word in that context doesn’t mean “murder.” It means that the cause of death was the actions of other human beings. It means Walker died from being shot, and that’s all. Again, that omitted detail might be accidental, and and might be deliberate, but either way the sloppy reporting will help get the rioting started.
Happy Fourth of July Weekend, Akron!