The NAACP's Legal Defense Fund Twitter posted a series of tweets naming 76 men and women who were killed in police custody since the 1999 death of Amadou Diallo in New York. Starting with the most recent death, what follows are more detailed accounts of many of those included in the Legal Defense Fund's tweets.
Rumain Brisbon, 34, Phoenix, Ariz.—Dec. 2, 2014
Brisbon, an unarmed black father of four, was shot to death in when a police officer apparently mistook his bottle of pills for a gun. Aftermath: Pending.
Tamir Rice, 12, Cleveland, Ohio—Nov. 22, 2014
Officer Tim Loehmann shot and killed Rice, who was holding a BB gun, seconds after spotting him at a park. Aftermath: Rice's family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Cleveland.
Akai Gurley, 28, Brooklyn, NY—Nov. 20, 2014
Gurley was shot in a dark stairwell of an East New York housing project building by Officer Peter Liang. Gurley was unarmed. Police Commissioner William Bratton called Gurley "a total innocent." "The cop who was standing behind Officer Liang doesn't know what happened; the girlfriend doesn't know what happened," a senior police official told the New York Times. "There is a distinct possibility that Officer Liang doesn't quite understand what happened." Aftermath: District Attorney Ken Thompson announced that he is investigating.
Kajieme Powell, 25, St. Louis, Mo.—August 19, 2014
Powell was shot by police who responded to a 911 call accusing him of stealing some energy drinks and pastries. Cops claimed that he approached them holding a knife "in an overhand grip"; video footage of the incident shows that Powell did not come as close to the police as they reported and that his hands were by his side. Police shot him within 15 seconds of arriving at the scene. Aftermath: Powell's family has filed a wrongful death suit against the St. Louis police chief and arresting officers.
Ezell Ford, 25, Los Angeles, Calif.—August 12, 2014
Ford was shot by police who were conducting "an investigative stop." " A struggle ensued," read the LAPD's news release. Ford's family members say he was lying down when shot. Aftermath: The LAPD, which hasn't closed the investigation into Ford's death, put an indefinite "investigative hold" on the coroner's autopsy report to prevent witness testimony from being tainted.
Dante Parker, 36, San Bernardino County, Calif.—August 12, 2014
Police responded to a call about an attempted break-in. The suspect fled on a bicycle. Police found Parker nearby riding his bike. He was unarmed. He resisted arrest and a struggle ensued. Police tasered him and he died. Aftermath: Pending. The NAACP has called for a federal investigation.
Michael Brown, 18, Ferguson, Mo.—August 9, 2014
Shot by Officer Darren Wilson after an altercation that happened inside Wilson's car. Wilson reported that Brown "looked like a demon." Aftermath: Wilson was not indicted by a grand jury. He resigned from the Ferguson police force. "The family greatly wanted to have the killer of their unarmed son held accountable. They really would look at every legal avenue," said Brown's family's lawyer Benjamin Crump.
John Crawford III, 22, Beavercreek, Ohio—August 5, 2014
Crawford was fatally shot while carrying a pellet gun in a Wal-Mart. The gun was unsold merchandise and out of its package. A man named Ronald Ritchie told 911 that he looked like he was pointing it at people, but a month later he admitted that Crawford was not pointing the gun at people. Aftermath: No indictment.
Tyree Woodson, 38, Baltimore, Md.—August 2, 2014
Police say Woodson's fatal gunshot wound was self-inflicted. That would mean that he smuggled his gun into a police station after police brought him there for having several open warrants. "Things don't seem quite right here," said Baltimore Councilman Carl Stokes. "This person could have a gun, a high caliber gun, that could be used against other officers and then he allegedly kills himself." Aftermath: Pending.
Eric Garner, 43, New York, N.Y.—July 17, 2014
Police alleged they saw Garner selling illegal untaxed cigarettes, but witnesses at the scene said he was stopped because he broke up a fight. After an argument, Officer Daniel Pantaleo placed Garner in a chokehold. Garner died of neck compression from the chokehold along with "the compression of his chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police." Aftermath: The New York City medical examiner ruled Garner's death a homicide. Pantaleo was not indicted.
Victor White III, 22, Iberia Parish, La.—March 22, 2014
The coroner says he shot himself while handcuffed in the back of a police cruiser. The autopsy report claims, White's injuries "are possible to be self-inflicted even with the hands handcuffed behind the back." "Short of him being Houdini or David Copperfield, it's not possible," said White's family's attorney. Aftermath: Pending. District Attorney Phil Haney of the 16th Judicial Circuit, who said he will let a federal investigation run its course before making a decision.
Yvette Smith, 47, Bastrop, Texas—February 16, 2014
Officers responding to a domestic disturbance call shot after she opened her front door to them. Initially, police claimed that Smith had a firearm, but the sheriff's office retracted this the next day. Aftermath: Deputy Daniel Willis, who shot Smith, was indicted on a murder charge. Her family is asking for $5 million in a wrongful death suit.
McKenzie Cochran, 25, Southfield, Mich.—January 28, 2014
Cochran died of "position compression asphyxia" during struggle with mall security. Cochran told them, " I can't breathe." His death ruled an accident by medical examiner. Aftermath: No indictments for the security guards.
Jordan Baker, 26, Houston, Texas—January 16, 2014
An off-duty police officer thought Baker fit the description of robbery suspects—both they and he were wearing black hooded sweatshirts. A scuffle and foot chase ensued. Baker, who was unarmed, was fatally shot. Aftermath: Officer J. Castro, who killed Baker, was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation. Baker's mother was said to be considering filing a lawsuit.
Andy Lopez, 13, Santa Rosa, Calif.—October 22, 2013
Lopez was carrying a pellet gun that resembled an AK-47 assault rifle. After officers reportedly told Lopez to drop the gun, he turned toward them and they shot him. Aftermath: No indictment.
Miriam Carey, 34, Washington, D.C.—October 3, 2013
While attempting to make a U-turn at a White House checkpoint, Carey allegedly hit a barricade and a Secret Service officer in front of the White House. After a high-speed chase, police surrounded her, weapons drawn. She was shot five times in the chase and died at the scene. She was unarmed. Her daughter was in the car with her and was unharmed. Aftermath: The U.S. Attorney's Office declined to press charges.
Jonathan Ferrell, 24, Bradfield Farms, N.C.—September 14, 2013
Ferrell crashed his car and knocked on the door of a nearby house. The woman inside called the police. Police said that when Ferrell was apprehended, they shot him. Ten times. Aftermath: Officer Randall Kerrick has been indicted on a charge of voluntary manslaughter. It took two grand juries to get there.
Carlos Alcis, 43, New York, N.Y.—August 15, 2013
Alcis died of a heart attack after the police mistakenly raided his home in search of a cell phone thief. Aftermath: Alcis's family has filed a wrongful death suit against the city and the NYPD for $10 million.
Larry Eugene Jackson, Jr., 32, Austin, Texas—July 26, 2013
Jackson was fatally shot during a scuffle resulting from a chase that took place when detective Charles Kleinert apprehended Jackson for trying to "defraud" a bank. Aftermath: Kleinert was indicted on a manslaughter charge.
Deion Fludd, 17, New York, N.Y.—May 5, 2013
Police say that a train clipped Fludd as the chased him after dodging subway fare. According to his mother, Fludd denied this before succumbing to his injuries. Aftermath: Fludd's mother sued the officers involved, the NYPD, and the MTA.
Kimani Gray, 16, New York, N.Y.—March 9, 2013
Police said Gray pointed a revolver at them as they attempted to question him. Friends and family say Gray had never had a gun, and a witness says he never pointed one at police. The cops shot a total of 11 rounds, striking Gray several times. Aftermath: No indictments for the cops responsible for shooting Gray.
Johnnie Kamahi Warren, 43, Dotham, Ala.—December 10, 2012
A Houston County Sheriff's deputy spotted Warren struggling with three other men outside a bar. Upon approaching Warren, he used a taser at least twice. Soon after additional officers arrived and arrested him, he lost consciousness and died at the hospital soon after. Outcome: An Alabama Bureau of Investigation probe; the sheriff's deputy was placed on paid leave.
Malissa Williams, 30, and Timothy Russell, 43, Cleveland, Ohio—November 29, 2012
Russell led 62 police cars on a chase that ended with 137 shots being fired at his car, killing him and Williams. Police believed someone in Russell's car had fired at them first. Cornered at a middle school, Cleveland Patrolman Michael Brelo jumped on top of Russell's car from behind, climbed to the hood, and fired 15 more shots. Aftermath: A judge approved a settlement between the city and the two's families—$1.5 million each. Brelo was indicted in May 2014 for voluntary manslaughter. His trial date has not been set.
Reynaldo Cuevas, 20, New York, N.Y.—September 7, 2012
Cuevas was shot and killed by police as he was fleeing armed men attempting to rob the bodega he worked at. Aftermath: The Bronx District Attorney did not find the officer at fault and declined to move the case forward to a grand jury. His mother filed a $25 million wrongful death claim against the city last year.
Chavis Carter, 21, Jonesboro, Ark.—July 29, 2012
Police say Carter killed himself while handcuffed in the back of a police car. His mother pointed out that he was left-handed (he would have shot himself with his right hand), detained for marijuana while his concealed weapon supposedly went undetected, and not suicidal. Aftermath: The officers involved were placed on administrative leave and the FBI stepped in to "monitor and assess " the situation. His mother filed a wrongful death suit.
Shantel Davis, 23, New York, N.Y.—June 14, 2012
Police chased Davis in a stolen car through East Flatbush until it crashed. In the ensuing struggle at the vehicle, one officer fired one shot, killing Davis. She was unarmed. It's "not clear" if the plainclothes officers chasing knew the car was stolen. David was due in court the week she died for helping hold a man hostage as the group robbed his home. Aftermath: The officers involved were placed on administrative duty.
Sharmel Edwards, 49, Las Vegas, Nev.—April 21, 2012
Edwards was suspected of stealing a vehicle. A police chase ensued. Cops said that when they were finally able to get her to leave her car, she pointed a gun at them and they opened fire. At least three witnesses disputed that claim, with two saying she wasn't carrying a weapon at all. Aftermath: The Clark County DA office ruled that the officers who killed Edwards acted "reasonably and lawfully."
Tamon Robinson, 27, New York, N.Y.—April 18, 2012
Police responded to a call from Canarsie, Brooklyn that Robinson was stealing paving stones. When confronted by police, Robinson, unarmed, ran toward the building where his mother lived; officers chased him by car, hitting him. Aftermath: Robinson's family reached a $2 million settlement in a wrongful death suit against the city this year.
Ervin Jefferson, 18, Atlanta, Ga.—March 24, 2012
Security guards shot Jefferson to death during a "bizarre chain of events" outside of an apartment complex. Aftermath: Security guards Curtis Scott and Gary Jackson were arrested and charged with impersonating police.
Kendrec McDade, 19, Pasadena, Calif.—March 24, 2012
McDade was chased and shot by two police officers after a 911 caller falsely reported he had been robbed at gunpoint by two black men. Both were unarmed. McDade was shot seven times. Aftermath: The police department and Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office cleared the officers of wrongdoing. Investigations by the FBI and Office of Independent Review are pending.
Rekia Boyd, 22, Chicago, Ill.—March 21, 2012
Off-duty officer Dante Servin fired an unregistered firearm into an alleyway where four people were standing after he allegedly saw a man brandish a gun. One of the bullets hit Boyd in the back of the head. She died the next day. Aftermath: The city of Chicago paid Boyd's family $4.5 million in a wrongful death suit. The officer was charged with last November with involuntary manslaughter, reckless discharge of a firearm, and reckless conduct.
Shereese Francis, 30, New York, N.Y.—March 15, 2012
Francis, a schizophrenic who at the time was not taking her medication, became "increasingly emotionally distraught" after an argument with her mother. Her sister called 311, hoping for an ambulance—four police officers arrived instead, who chased Francis through the home. All four allegedly pinned her down as they handcuffed her and she stopped breathing soon after. She was pronounced dead at the hospital. The coroner's report concluded Francis died of "compression of trunk during agitated violent behavior." Aftermath: Her family filed a lawsuit after police dragged their feet on releasing records under the Freedom of Information Act.
Wendell Allen, 20, New Orleans, La.—March 7, 2012
Allen, unarmed, dressed only in jeans and sneakers, was shot and killed by New Orleans police officer Joshua Colclough executing a search warrant of Allen's home for marijuana. Aftermath: Colclough pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced to four years in prison last year.
Nehemiah Dillard, 29, Gainesville, Fla.—March 5, 2012
Dillard was admitted to Meridian Behavioral Healthcare after "displaying strange behavior" in a stranger's yard. He allegedly struck a member of the hospital's staff, who called police. Officers shot him twice with tasers after he allegedly attacked them. After being handcuffed, the Tampa Bay Times reports, "a staffer at the facility injected him with drugs" and Dillard died soon after from cardiac arrest.
Dante Price, 25, Dayton, Ohio—March 1, 2012
Security guards ordered Price out of an apartment complex. They told him to leave his car, but instead he decided to drive away, so they fired 17 shots at him. Aftermath: Justin Wissinger and Christopher Tarbert pled guilty to involuntary manslaughter and abduction. They were sentenced 3 to 11 years in prison.
Raymond Allen, 34, Galveston, Texas—February 27, 2012
Police responded to a complaint from a hotel that Allen was repeatedly jumping from the second story. Two officers tased him. He stopped breathing, and died in the hospital. Aftermath: His wife filed a lawsuit against Galveston, the county, and taser's manufacturer.
Sgt. Manuel Loggins, Jr., 31, Orange County, Calif.—February 7, 2012
On a religious fast and off medication for ADHD, Loggins allegedly crashed into a gate a Orange County high school with his car carrying his two daughters. After walking to and returning from the school's athletic field with a Bible, he was approached by a police officer, who shot Loggins three times through his car window. He was unarmed. Aftermath: Orange County paid $4.4 million to Loggins' family in a settlement last year.
Ramarley Graham, 18, New York, N.Y.—February 2, 2012
Graham was shot and killed by police in the Bronx, who chased him into his home without a warrant. He was unarmed. Aftermath: The officer, Richard Haste, was initially indicted in 2012, but the case was later overturned. A second grand jury decided not indict Haste. Graham's mother said just last month that the Justice Department will proceed with its own investigation.
Kenneth Chamberlain, 68, White Plains, N.Y.—November 19, 2011
Chamberlain's Life Aid alert necklace was triggered by mistake, causing the police to respond. He refused to answer his door, saying he did not need help. Officer Steven Hart called Chamberlain a "nigger." The police broke down his door. They allege that Chamberlain attempted to charge them with a butcher knife. They tasered him, and shot him dead. Aftermath: No indictment for Officer Anthony Carelli, who shot Chamberlain twice. Chamberlain's family filed a $21 million wrongful death suit.
Alonzo Ashley, 29, Denver, Colo.—July 18, 2011
Police were called by Denver Zoo security who were alarmed over Ashley's behavior. Ashley was confronted and tasered. He started convulsing and then stopped breathing. Aftermath: Ashley's death was ruled a homicide by the coroner, but no officers were charged. Ashley's family sued Denver and the zoo.
Kenneth Harding, 19, San Francisco, Calif.—July 16, 2011
Harding fled a routine Muni fare inspection. The police said that a shootout ensued, witnesses said that Harding did not have a weapon. According to police Cmdr. Mike Biel, the caliber of the bullet that killed Harding did not match the caliber used by police. "We believe that the fatal wound on Mr. Harding's body was self-inflicted," Biel said. Aftermath: Harding's mother filed federal wrongful death and civil rights lawsuits against San Francisco.
Raheim Brown, 20, Oakland, Calif.—January 22, 2011
During a struggle with the police, Brown was shot five times, including twice in the head. Police reports alleged that Brown was attempting to stab an officer with a screwdriver. Aftermath: No indictment for Officer Barhin Bhatt. The Oakland Unified School District settled with Brown's parents for $995,000.
Reginald Doucet, 25, Los Angeles, Calif.—January 14, 2011
Police responded to a "disturbing the peace" call, where Doucet was arguing with a taxi driver. Doucet had stripped down. Doucet reportedly resisted arrest, and a chase ensued. During a violent confrontation, the unarmed Doucet was fatally shot. Aftermath: The Los Angeles Police Commission ruled that officer Aaron Goff was justified in shooting Doucet. A judge dismissed the wrongful death lawsuit filed by Doucet's family.
Derrick Jones, 37, Oakland, Calif.—November 8, 2010
Jones' neighbor accused him of assault. Police arrived and Jones fled. According to Officers Perez-Angeles and Daza-Quiroz, when they caught up with Jones, they thought that he was reaching for a gun, so they fired at him. Six of their nine shots hit Jones, who was unarmed. Aftermath: No indictment. Oakland settled with Jones' parents and daughter for $225,000. His widow lost a $10 million civil suit.
Danroy Henry, 20, Thornwood, N.Y.—October 17, 2010
Officer Aaron Hess shot Henry through the windshield of Henry's car as Henry drove during a chaotic altercation. Aftermath: No indictment for Hess. Henry's family filed a wrongful death suit.
Aiyana Jones, 7, Detroit, Mich.—May 16, 2010
Jones was shot when a Special Response Team raided the duplex she lived in. Officers threw a grenade into Jones' apartment. Officer Joseph Weekley claimed Jones's grandmother grabbed his gun, causing Jones to be shot. Aftermath: Weekley was charged with involuntary manslaughter. His first trial ended in a mistrial. So did his second.
Steven Eugene Washington, 27, Los Angeles, CA—March 20, 2010
Police officers spotted Washington on a Los Angeles street. He reportedly approached them, appearing to be removing something from his waistband. He was shot and killed. No weapon was found on him. Later, Washington's family revealed that he was autistic. Aftermath: Police Chief Charlie Beck recommended that Officers Allan Corrales and George Diego be cleared of charges, but the civilian commission that oversees the LAPD disagreed Washington's mother received $950,000 in a settlement with Los Angeles.
Aaron Campbell, 25, Portland, Ore.—January 29, 2010
Campbell was shot in front of his apartment after being reported to the police as suicidal and possessing a gun. Campbell was unarmed. Campbell was walked backward with his hands behind his head. Officer Frashour told Campbell to put his hands straight in the air. When Campbell did not comply, Frashour shot him. Aftermath: No indictment for Frashour. He was fired for not following protocol, but then reinstated. Portland agreed to pay Campbell's family $1.2 million to settle their civil suit against the city.
Kiwane Carrington, 15, Champaign, Ill.—October 9, 2009
Police investigating a suspected break-in at a house encountered the unarmed Carrington. A scuffle ensued and Officer Daniel Norbits's gun "went off," killing Carrington. Aftermath: No indictment for Norbits, but he did receive a total of $423,697 in disability and worker's compensation payments. Carrington's family received $470,000 from Champaign in a settlement of their wrongful death lawsuit.
Victor Steen, 17, Pensacola, Fla.—October 3, 2009
Sheen rode his bike as a cop chased him. Steen refused to stop, and so the cop, Jerald Ard, tasered him. Steen fell from his bike and Ard ran him over, killing him. Ard also may have planted a gun on Steen after his death. Aftermath: Ard was suspended from the force without pay for two weeks. The city of Pensacola paid Steen's mother a $500,000 settlement.
Shem Walker, 49, New York, N.Y.—July 11, 2009
Walker was shot when trying to eject an undercover officer from his stoop. Walker was unarmed. Aftermath: No indictment for the officer. New York City paid $2.25 million to settle with Walker's family.
Oscar Grant, 22, Oakland, Calif.—January 1, 2009
After reports of a fight at the BART train station, police detained Grant and some of his friends. While Grant was lying face down, resisting arrest, a police officer named Johannes Mehserle shot him. The officer claimed he meant to taser Grant. Aftermath: Mehserle was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter and not guilty of second-degree murder and voluntary manslaughter. He was sentenced to two years in prison. BART paid Grant's mother and daughter $2.8 million to settle the civil suit they filed. Grant's father lost a civil case against Mehserle.
Tarika Wilson, 26, Lima, Ohio—January 4, 2008
A SWAT team arrived at Wilson's home with the intention of arresting her companion for dealing drugs. When they opened fire, they shot and killed Wilson. Aftermath: Sgt. Joe Chavalia, who shot Wilson, was acquitted of two misdemeanors: negligent homicide and negligent assault. Wilson's family received a $2.5 million wrongful death settlement.
DeAunta Terrel Farrow, 12, West Memphis, Ark.—July 22, 2007
Farrow was out walking with his 14-year-old cousin when gunned down by a police officer, Erik Sammis. Sammis claims that only after he shot Farrow did he realize that the gun Farrow was carrying was a toy. Aftermath: Sammis wasn't indicted. He resigned from the force via a letter that contained the sentence, "Then there are others who are not rational and breed hate and racism in this community." Sammis and Jimmy Evans, who was also on duty with him July 22, 2007, were found not liable in Farrow's family's $250 million civil suit.
Sean Bell, 23, New York, N.Y.—November 25, 2006
On the night before Bell's wedding, Bell and his friends attempted to flee the scene of escalating tension with the police. The police fired about 50 shots into Bell's car, killing him in the process: Aftermath: All three officers were acquitted on all charges. They and their commanding officer were fired/forced to resign. New York City agreed to pay Bell's family $3.25 million to settle their wrongful death suit.
Henry Glover, 31, New Orleans, La.—September 2, 2005
Glover was shot in the chest by NOPD officer David Warren at a strip mall in the days following Hurricane Katrina. Glover, with the help of a friend, attempted to get aid, and ended up handcuffed. He died. NOPD Officer Greg McRae set fire to Glover's body in Glover's friend's car. Aftermath: David Warren was sentenced to 25 years and 9 months on a manslaughter conviction. Greg MacRae got 17 years and 3 months for obstruction of justice. About a year and a half later, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated Warren's convictions and two of MacRae's, ordering new trials. Warren was acquitted in the retrial.
Ronald Madison, 40, and James Brisette, 17, New Orleans, La.—Sept. 4, 2005
Police received a call claiming gunfire on the Danziger Bridge. Police opened fire upon arriving in a Budget Rental Truck. They hit Brisette. Madison, who was developmentally disabled, fled. Two cops chased him down. One, Robert Faulcon, shot him. The other, Sgt. Kenneth Bowen, was convicted of stomping Madison on the back before he died. Aftermath: That conviction was later overturned. Police attempted a coverup. Eventually five officers involved in the shooting were found guilty of various charges. Faulcon was sentenced to 65 years' imprisonment, Bowen and Sgt. Robert Gisevius Gisevius received 40 years, Officer Anthony Villavaso got 38 years, and Arthur "Archie" Kaufman, who was the investigator placed on the case and eventually found guilty of conspiring to conceal evidence, received 6 years. A month later, the same judge that convicted them, Kurt Engelhardt, vacated their convictions and ordered a new trial as a result of the defendants' appeal and "highly unusual, extensive and truly bizarre actions" by prosecutors.
Timothy Stansbury, 19, New York, N.Y.—January 24, 2004
Officer Richard S. Neri Jr., testifed that he shot the unarmed Stansbury by accident when Stansbury pushed open the rooftop door of a building Neri was patrolling. Aftermath: Neri was not indicted. He was suspended for 30 days without pay and stripped of his gun permanently. The NYPD settled the wrongful death lawsuit of Stansbury's family for $2 million.
Alberta Spruill, 57, New York, N.Y.—May 16, 2003
Police knocked down Spruill's door, apparently acting on bad information that there were drugs and guns inside her apartment. They threw a concussion grenade into her home. She died of a heart attack. Aftermath: The city paid Spruill's family $1.6 million as a settlement for the wrongful death lawsuit they filed.
Ousmane Zongo, 43, New York, N.Y.—May 22, 2003
Zongo was shot four times (twice in the back) by officer Bryan Conroy during a police raid in a storage facility where Zongo worked. Zongo was unarmed and his business (art and musical instrument reparation) had nothing to do with what the police were investigating (CD and DVD piracy). Aftermath: Conroy was convicted of criminally negligent homicide. He received five years probation and lost his job. Zongo's family received $3 million in a wrongful death suit.
Orlando Barlow, 28, Las Vegas, Nev.—February 28, 2003
Barlow was hired to babysit seven children. After a supposed argument, his employer (the children's mother) called the police, saying that Barlow was holding her children hostage with a sawed-off shotgun. Police responded to the call. Barlow was shot while surrendering. He was unarmed. Aftermath: A coroner's inquest labeled the shooting "excusable." The FBI looked into it. "The shooting was unanimously ruled justifiable, but Hartman and two other officers were fired after they printed T-shirts with the initials 'BDRT' — 'Baby's Daddy Removal Team,'"reported the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Timothy Thomas, 19, Cincinnati, Ohio—April 7, 2001
Nine officers pursued Thomas, who was wanted on 14 misdemeanor counts. Twelve of them were traffic violations. A chase ensued. Thomas ran into an alley and was shot by Patrolman Stephen Roach, who joined the group of nine officers during the pursuit. Roach said he believed Thomas was going for a gun, but an investigation later revealed that Thomas was attempting to pull up his pants. Aftermath: Roach was acquitted on a charge of negligent homicide. An investigation later revealed that Roach lied on his incident report and broke protocol.
Prince Jones, 25, Fairfax County, Va.—Sept. 1, 2000
An undercover narcotics agent followed the unarmed Jones, firing 16 shots at him while Jones was in his Jeep. Eight landed. Officials later confirmed that Officer Carlton Jones (no relation) mistook Prince Jones for someone else. Aftermath: The Fairfax commonwealth's attorney and the Justice Department declined to file charges against the officer, Carlton Jones. The case was not put before a grand jury. Five years after the killing, Prince Jones's parents and daughter were awarded $3.7 million in a wrongful death lawsuit.
Ronald Beasley, 36, and Earl Murray, 36, Dellwood, Mo.—June 12, 2000
Beasley and Murray, described as family and friends as small-time drug dealers, were shot and killed during an attempted drug bust in a restaurant parking lot. One cop called the killings "unintended, but not a mistake." Aftermath: The officers were cleared of wrongdoing after a yearlong investigation.
Patrick Dorismond, 26, New York, NY—March 16, 2000
An undercover cop approached Dorismond and his friend, Kevin Kaiser, when they were standing outside of a lounge. The cop asked where he could buy marijuana. A scuffle ensued and another undercover cop, Anthony Vasquez, stepped in to help his partner. Vasquez claimed Dorismond grabbed his gun and caused it to discharge into his own chest. Vasquez said the first cop was in their face, and that he attempted to pull Dorismond out of the confrontation to no avail. Aftermath: Vasquez was not indicted. New York paid the Dorismond family $2.25 million as a settlement in a wrongful death suit.
Malcolm Ferguson, 23, New York, N.Y.—March 1, 2000
Drug officers "noticed some movement" in the hallway of a public housing building and investigated. Ferguson, who was unarmed, ran up the stairs. "At some point, on the second-floor landing, there was a struggle," Chief John Scanlon said. "The [officer Officer Louis Rivera's] firearm discharged." Aftermath: Rivera was cleared of wrongdoing. Ferguson's mom, Juanita Young, was awarded $10.5 million as a result of her wrongful death suit against the NYPD and the city.
Amadou Diallo, 23, New York, N.Y.—Feb. 4, 1999
Four plainclothes officers fired a total of 41 shots at Diallo outside of his apartment in the Bronx. Nineteen hit him. He was armed with a wallet, which an officer mistook for a gun when he pulled it out of his pocket. Officers initially approached him because he supposedly matched the description of a serial rapist. Aftermath: The officers were acquitted of all charges. Diallo's mother and stepfather filed a $61 million ($20m plus $1m for each shot fired) wrongful death suit against the officers and New York city. They settled for $3 million.
Obviously, this list is by no means complete. If you are so inclined, please add to it in the comments below.
Dear Gawker Commenters Who Are Asking About White People Killed by Cops: The reason this list is populated with minorities is the topic at hand. That topic is police shooting unarmed minorities. When the next Unarmed White Republican Rancher (if such a thing exists) is shot down, we can write another list.
Darren Rainey, a 50-year-old mentally-ill prisoner whom the guards had handcuffed and locked in the cell the night before. Witnesses and DOC reports indicate Rainey was left in the scalding hot water for hours, allegedly as punishment for defecating in his cell.
His skin had to be scrubbed up from the floor.
Derek Williams, 22, Milwaukee, Wis.—July, 2011
Williams was arrested on suspicion of robbery, while being held in the back of the officer's squad car Williams complained that he couldn't breathe. He begged the officers to call an ambulance but was ignored. Williams died of suffocation in the back of the car. Aftermath: Despite the fact that an inquest jury had found probable cause, a special prosecutor declined to file charges against the three officers who arrested Williams, citing a lack of sufficient evidence to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt.
Mah-hi-vist Goodblanket, 18, Custer County, OK
Parents called 911 for help after Mah-hi-vist had an episode of his Oppositional Defiant Disorder. Before officers entered the residence Goodblankets father, Wilbur, asked them not to shoot his son. Police claim Goodblanket had a knife, a fact disputed by witnesses. He was tasered twice and shot 7 times.
The District Attorney declined to press charges and two of the officers received awards of valor for their part in the shooting.
Clinton Allen, 25, Dallas, TX - March 10, 2013
Clinton Allen was shot 7 times by Dallas police officer Clark Staller, who was responding to a domestic disturbance call at Allen's girlfriend's house. Clinton was unarmed.
Police say Allen charged them and that there was a scuffle but multiple eye witness reports beg to differ. Witnesses say that Officer Staller arrived at the apartment complex, and before the caller had a chance to give him any information, saw someone walking towards the parking lot, and initiated a foot pursuit.
One sworn affidavit that was presented to the grand jury read as follows:
"On 03/10/13 around 12:15 am I was coming into my apartment that night and saw Clinton Allen with his hands up and the officer pointing his gun at Clinton… I heard 4 to 5 gun shots. I am an ex-military man and I know aggression when 1 see it. Clinton was not showing any signs of aggression towards this officer."
The grand jury did not indict officer Staller who remains an active member of the Dallas police department. The family has filed a civil suit against the city.
Here's one from 2010 in Seattle involving a Native man:
John T. Williams was a Nuu-chah-nulth man living in Seattle, a pretty famous local woodcarver from generations of renowned woodcarvers. He was shot carrying his whittling knife and a piece of cedar across the street. After shooting Williams four times, Officer Birk said that he had told Williams repeatedly to put the knife down and Birk shot him after Williams failed to comply. However, Williams was elderly and hard of hearing, and from witness reports, Williams never acknowledged Birk, probably never hearing Birk's commands.
And here are some descriptions of deaths that were police-related, though not caused by police (officially):
Barrington Williams, 25, New York, N.Y.—September 17, 2013
Williams died from asthma attack after a police chase allegedly resulting from his illegal sale of subway swipes.
Kyam Livingston, 37, New York, N.Y.—July 24, 2013
Livingston had spent over 20 hours in a holding cell after being arrested for fighting with her grandmother. She complained of cramps and diarrhea before a fatal alcoholic seizure. Aftermath: Family sued the NYPD.
Jersey Green, 37, Aurora, Ill.—March 12, 2012
Police tasered Green during a chase, but Police Chief Greg Thomas said after the autopsy that the "Taser was not at all attributable." Green's official cause of death was cocaine overdose, according to his autopsy.
Noel Polanco, 22, New York, N.Y.—October 4, 2012
Polanco was shot in his car by Detective Hassan Hamdy during a stop. Hamdy reported that Polanco did not comply with the order to keep his hands on the wheel. Hamdy said he thought Polanco was reaching under his front seat for a weapon, so he shot Polanco. Aftermath: No grand jury indictment for Hamdy, though he did receive a departmental charge: failure to employ proper tactics that caused a civilian's death. His mother received a $2.5 million settlement from the city.
Web design and online marketing consultant living in the Pacific northwest. When I'm not working I like traveling, watching movies, meeting and learning from new people. The world is a big places and I am fortunate enough to have a career that helps make it seem smaller.
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