The unnamed officer was fired for ‘multiple policy and procedure violations,’ local police say
An Illinois police officer has been fired for his role in a police shooting in the Chicago suburbs that left a Black man dead and a Black woman hospitalized earlier this week, according to media reports.
The man, Marcellis Stinnette, was a passenger in a car with the woman, Tafara Williams. Williams was in the driver seat when another officer began “investigating an occupied vehicle” in Waukegan, Illinois late night Tuesday, local authorities said. She then “fled” the scene, and the vehicle was later spotted a roughly half mile away by the now-fired officer, CNN reports.
Waukegan is about 45 miles north of Chicago.
The ex-officer, a Hispanic man who was a five-year veteran of the Waukegan Police Department, was approaching the car when it began to reverse in his direction, prompting the officer to fire his semi-automatic pistol at the car, as reported by CBS News. Waukegan Police Chief Wayne Walles said the officer was “in fear for his safety” when he discharged his weapon, but he was fired for “multiple policy and procedure violations,” violations that were not identified. The officer was initially placed on administrative leave.
Stinnette, 19, died after being taken to the hospital, while Williams, who is in her 20s, is expected to make a recovery from the gunshot wounds. Williams, who is identified as Stinnette’s girlfriend, made a video statement from the hospital, asking why the officer felt the need to use his firearm on the vehicle.
“I didn’t do nothing wrong,” Williams stated in a video posted by WLS-TV. “I have a license. You didn’t tell me I was under arrest. Why did you just flame up my car like that? Why did you shoot?”
The Illinois State Police has now been brought in to investigate the police shooting, while the family of Stinnette is receiving legal representation from Ben Crump, the attorney who represents the families of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, who were also killed at the hands of police.
“We do not trust the police narrative in this case,” Crump said. “We have seen over and over that the ‘official’ report when police kill Black people is far too often missing or misrepresenting detail.”
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