Yes, he confronted the cop with a knife and at that point in time the officer should have done something. However, if the perpetrator walks away and rethinks his actions, there is no excuse for what the cop did.
Chilling dashcam footage that shows a white cop shooting dead a black teenager sparked protests across Chicago after it was made public on Tuesday.
The shocking video shows Jason Van Dyke shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times on the night of October 20 last year. The police officer, who initially claimed he had felt threatened, continues to fire at point-blank range for 13 seconds as the young man lies motionless on the ground.
Van Dyke, 37, was charged with first-degree murder on Monday, more than a year after the killing.
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.
The nearly seven-minute video shows McDonald, who was armed with a small knife, walking towards police cars stopped on a four-lane road. With his hand near his left pocket, the teenager walks away from two officers who have their guns drawn.
He was reportedly told to drop the knife, but there is no sound on the video to verify the claim. McDonald is seen spinning around and falling to the ground as Van Dyke opens fire at point-blank range.
The officer continues to shoot even as the teenager falls to the ground. Smoke is later seen rising from his lifeless body, apparently from shots fired by Van Dyke. An autopsy report showed McDonald was shot at least twice in the back. It also revealed there was PCP in his system when he died.
The footage later shows Van Dyke walking over and kicking the knife out of the teenager’s lifeless hand. There are reports that it was 3in long.
Eight police officers were called to the scene after reports of someone stealing car stereos and trying to break into a trucking yard with a knife. Police officers also claimed McDonald had threatened them with the knife and slashed at the tires and windshield of a patrol car.
Van Dyke had been on the scene for less than 30 seconds after he opened fire according to reports, and was the only person to shoot his weapon, emptying his 9 mm pistol and even going to reload.
The video was made public despite attempts by both police and Chicago city officials to block its release. It has also been widely reported that police deleted footage of the shooting from a nearby Burger King’s surveillance camera.
Burger King District manager Jay Darshane even admitted that police had tampered with their video.
Read more: DailyMail.co.uk