US white police officer kills mentally ill black man
A newly released video shows a white US police officer fatally shot an unarmed mentally ill African American man in Florida in February.
The family of the victim, Lavall Hall, released the footage captured from within a police car at the scene on Wednesday.
The 19-minute video shows Miami Gardens officer Eddo Trimino firing five shots at Hall after shouting “get on the ground or you’re dead” on February 15. Police also used electric stun devices at him at least twice.
Two of five shots hit 25-year-old Hall who suffered schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. He had been released from a mental hospital just one week earlier, according to a federal civil rights lawsuit filed in Florida’s Southern District .
Twenty-five-year-old schizophrenic African American Lavall Hall was shot dead by a Florida police officer on Feb.15
Police claim the victim attacked them with “deadly force” using broom handle. The footage, however, shows Hall was running away from them.
Family attorney Glen Goldberg who said the video was released to him by the city, called for an independent investigation into the case.
“The officers had made up their minds they were going to kill Hall,” Goldberg said.
According to the lawsuit, police was aware of his condition and “knew or should have known that Hall suffered from a mental condition.”
“Hall was unable to communicate, clearly did not understand what was going on, and was visibly scared,” read the complaint.
Catherine Daniels, the mother of Lavall Hall, who was shot and killed on February 15 by Miami police.
His mother, Catherine Daniels, had called officers to her home to help control Hall who had a psychotic episode that night.
She said at a news conference on Wednesday that, “I never thought they [were] going to kill my child, murder my child.” She said she was “devastated” when she first saw the video.
“He was standing outside just holding the broomstick in his hand,” said Hall’s mother, “And I told him, Baby, come back inside, it’s cold.”
The new video of police brutality comes at a time when US enforcement officers are under harsh criticism for using brutal tactics against people of color and minorities.
The killing of several unarmed black men by white police officers in recent months and decisions by grand juries not to indict the officers triggered large-scale protests across the United States.
It follows another video that shows South Carolina police officer Michael Slager firing multiple shots at 50-year-old Walter Scott as the victim was running away on Saturday.