Vonderrit D. Myers Jr. (pictured) allegedly fired a shot at a St. Louis police officer before he was fatally shot earlier this month, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The shooting touched off days of protests and came on the heels of the death of Michael Brown, 18, who was unarmed when he was killed by a White officer in Ferguson, Mo.
On Tuesday, St. Louis police released a statement saying that forensic scientists from the Missouri Highway Patrol crime lab found gunshot residue on Myers’ hands, shirt, and inside the waistband and pockets of his jeans.
“Ballistics evidence also revealed three bullets that hit the ground where the officer was trying to take cover matched Myers’ gun. A round that pierced a car behind the officer was too badly damaged to be able to match it to Myers’ gun; however, it did not match the type of bullets the officer fired,” police said.
On Oct. 8th, an off-duty police officer on patrol for a private residents’ association in St. Louis’ Shaw neighborhood reportedly saw Myers and two other young men dash away when they saw him. As the officer allegedly chased them, Myers allegedly fired at least three shots at the officer before the officer returned fire, killing Myers, the St. Louis-Dispatch says.
Jeff Roorda, business manager for the St. Louis Police Officers’ Association, spoke at a press conference Tuesday afternoon.
“We’re done, as a police union, standing in the shadows in these cases,” Roorda said, according to the Post-Dispatch. Along with the gunshot residue results, Roorda and association president Joe Steiger mentioned photos circulating on social media showing Myers with guns and a prior arrest in St. Louis County in a shooting case.
Jerryl Christmas, a lawyer representing the Myers family, said the teen’s relatives identified him in the picture, but said they believed those pictures to be at least a year old, the paper says.
The investigation in to the fatal shooting continues. Investigators still are awaiting DNA and toxicology results, the report says. St. Louis Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce has announced plans to cross-deputize an assistant U.S. attorney to help with the investigation.