Wednesday, 22 November, 2017

White police officer shoots an off-duty black officer in the USA

Deandre Chaney and Cortney Smith Deandre Chaney and Cortney Smith
Andrew Cummings | 25 June, 2017, 02:19

An African American off-duty officer was shot by a fellow white cop in St. Louis' North Pointe neighborhood after a auto chase ended in a crash outside the off-duty officer's home.

A St. Louis Post-Dispatch piece describes the Wednesday night incident but does not identify the officers involved by race.

The officer told investigators he feared for his safety and didn't recognize the fellow officer as one of their own, according to KTVI-TV.

According to police, the off-duty officer heard a commotion and rushed to the scene with his service weapon. He complied with the order and as soon as the officers recognized him they told him to stand up and asked him to come toward them. A St. Louis officer was struck with "friendly fire" after a wild stolen vehicle chase ended with members of the force not recognizing him and striking the officer in the arm. They followed the vehicle until it crashed and the assailant fled on foot, then received reports that the assailant had started shooting at police.

As for the suspects, the injured suspect was taken into custody after he was treated and released at the hospital, while another was arrested at the scene. Neither of the officers' names have been released.

The officer who shot the off-duty officer is 36 years old and has been with the department more than eight years.

Tate says a "black professional in law enforcement" was "treated as an ordinary black guy on the street". The third suspect has yet to be apprehended.

The police department has given no description of a threat, he said.

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The victim's lawyer, Rufus J Tate Jr, told local media that the shooting was part of a wider problem in the United States with the perception of black men.

The white officer was among those chasing gunmen in a stolen auto when the officer with 11 years of service came out of his home armed with his police-issue gun to help. So we have a real problem with that.

'This has been a national discussion for the past two years'. "There is this perception that a black man is automatically feared". The officer, who later left the force, wasn't charged, which further strained relations between the area's black community and the police.

The department says the auto crashed near the intersection of Park Lane and Astra Avenue, northwest of West Florissant Avenue and Riverview Boulevard.

A year earlier in the suburb of White Plains, New York, a black off-duty Mount Vernon police officer was killed by a Westchester County policeman while holding an assault suspect at gunpoint.

But the department later confirmed the frustrating circumstances leading to the officer's injury. Two guns were recovered from the suspects.

Federal Bureau of Investigation statistics show such accidental police-on-police shootings occur at a low rate given the tense, confusing circumstances officers routinely face.

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