A LOUISIANA POLICE officer shot and killed a man following a confrontation outside a Baton Rouge convenience store, authorities said.
An autopsy shows Alton Sterling, 37, of Baton Rouge, died of multiple gunshot wounds to the chest and back, said East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner Dr William Clark.
Officers responded to the store about 12.35am yesterday after an anonymous caller indicated a man selling music CDs and wearing a red shirt threatened him with a gun, said Corporal L’Jean McKneely.
Two officers responded and had some type of altercation with the man and one officer fatally shot the suspect, McKneely said. Both officers have been placed on administrative leave, which is standard department policy, he said.
A video claiming to show the incident has been widely shared across social media today.
This video contains scenes and language some people may find upsetting.Source: 35,173,591 views/YouTube
The store’s owner, Abdul Muflahi, told WAFB-TV that the first officer used a Taser on Sterling and the second officer tackled the man. Muflahi said as Sterling fought to get the officer off of him, the first officer shot him “four to six times.”
The owner said Sterling did not have a gun in his hand at the time but he saw officers remove a gun from Sterling’s pocket after the shooting.
McKneely said late yesterday that he could not confirm Muflahi’s description of the alleged event or any other details of the investigation.
The Advocate reported a crowd of people protesting the shooting gathered yesterday afternoon at the store where it took place. The group grew to over 200 people, who chanted and waved signs late into the night, according to the newspaper.
Sterling is the 558th person killed by police in the US this year, according to a Guardian database.