Another Isolated Incident with a Cop, an Unarmed Black Man and a Cell Phone…
Still another edition in our ongoing and never to be ended series regarding “Some of us are more equal than the others…”
This one just came to light today over at the Daily Beast from Palm Beach:
Video at following…
PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. - Exclusively-obtained dash-cam video shows Dontrell Stephens, 20, talking on a cell phone while riding his bike on a Friday morning in September 2013. He can be seen turning onto Norma Elaine Road near Haverhill Road and Okeechobee Boulevard as PBSO deputy Adams Lin trails him.
Moments later, Stephens realizes he’s being followed. He pulls over, gets off his bike with a cell phone in his right hand and walks toward the deputy. For approximately four seconds Stephens is out of frame only to be seen again when being shot four times.
Stephens, who is black and has a criminal record for possessing cocaine, is seen running from the bullets then dropping to the ground.
Stephens was armed with nothing but a cell phone.
A short time later, an admittedly shaken Deputy Lin is heard talking to another deputy.
“He starts backing away,” Lin explains. “I said, ‘Get on the ground, get on the ground.”
Then, the other deputy is heard saying, “I got your back man. I got your back. Hey, you hear me?”
Deputy Lin responds, “Yeah, I know.”
That day, Sheriff Ric Bradshaw went on TV to defend the shooting.
“Stop what you’re doing and comply with us,” he told reporters. “There’s nothing in the rules of engagement that says we have to put our lives in jeopardy to wait to find out what this is to get killed.”
Lin was cleared to return to work four days later. Months later, investigators from the State Attorney’s Office and PBSO ruled the shooting justified.
Aaaaaand here we go again.
‘He ignored my commands! I was afraid for my life!’
Problem is…that isn’t what happened on the video:
“There are no records of any commands ever made to Dontrell Stephens,” explained Scarola.
“The deputy’s recorded statements following the shooting were absolutely false. Internal affairs completely ignored that evidence,” he said.
Today, Stephens is paralyzed from the waist down.
While Sheriff Bradshaw was on the record the day of Stephens’ shooting, he’s not talking about the case now. The Sheriff’s policy is to not comment on pending litigation.
Stephens’ shooting reveals a pattern of problems with how deputy-involved shootings are investigated.
He lied. The CoC and Internal Affairs covered for him…because who cares about another black man gunned down by the police?