a settlement with the city: “They [North Miami Police] realize this was something inappropriate regarding the shooting.” But he is outraged. “There’s no justification for shooting an unarmed person who’s talking to you and telling you that they don’t have a gun, and that they’re a mental health counselor,” Napoleon said.
The incident in North Miami comes after two highly publicized incidents in which black men were killed by police officers, both of which were captured live on video. On July 5, Alton Sterling, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, was shot and killed during an altercation with two police officers. The officers responded to an anonymous tip about a man threatening people with a gun outside a convenience store. Video footage from eyewitnesses shows police ordering Sterling to get on the ground before tackling him and pinning him down. Sterling was shot several times and killed. Witnesses later confirmed that Sterling did have a gun in his pocket, but that he never showed the weapon to anyone.
The following day, Philando Castile was shot and killed by an officer during a traffic stop in Falcon Heights, Minnesota while his fiancée and 4-year-old daughter sat in the car. The shooting made headlines after Castille’s fiancée, Diamond Reynolds, live-streamed the bloody aftermath on Facebook. According to Reynolds, Castille told the officer he had a firearm he was licensed to carry. The officer shot him as he reached into his pocket for his wallet and identification.
The shootings inflamed racial hostilities and violence erupted at a protest in Dallas, Texas, resulting in the deaths of five police officers. A separate attack in Baton Rouge on Sunday claimed the lives of three members of law enforcement. The issues are certain to shift the conversation during an already heated presidential election which has highlighted gun violence and inequity within the criminal justice system as crucial issues.