UPDATE: Monday, April 13, 2015 — 4:10 PM EST
Robert Bates, the Tulsa County Reserve Deputy who claims he thought he pulled out his Taser when he fatally shot Eric Courtney Harris on April 2, has been charged with second-degree manslaughter.
According to police, Bates said he though he was reaching for the Taser, but “inadvertently” fired his gun.
This is a developing story…
Yet another unarmed Black man was shot and killed by police, this time in Tulsa, Oklahoma by a 73-year-old officer of the law who said he accidentally pulled his gun when reaching for his Taser.
As seems to be par for the course today, the whole disturbing fracas was captured on video, and it ain’t pretty.
Tulsa police released video of the incident on Friday, nine days after the fatal shooting, reports The New York Daily News, and predictably, it’s as disturbing as all the rest – especially as you can hear Eric Harris’ dying words, and the callous way in which police responded to him, even using profanity, including “Shut the f— up!” after he was shot.
“He shot me! He shot me, man. Oh, my God. I’m losing my breath,” Eric Harris says as he struggles on the ground following the April 2 shooting, which flew under the radar until video emerged a week later.
“F— your breath,” a callous officer can be heard saying. “Shut the f— up!”
Reserve Deputy Robert Bates, 73, shouted “Taser! Taser!” before pulling the trigger on his gun, firing a round into Harris. “I shot him!” the former policeman says, dropping his gun. “I’m sorry.”
According to the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office, Bates was assisting other deputies who were trying to take Harris into custody after he fled from police during a sting operation.
Harris reportedly ran from officers who were trying to arrest him for selling a 9 mm. semiautomatic pistol and ammunition to undercover cops, reports The News.
“You shouldn’t have f—–g ran!” another deputy can be heard screaming, as Harris is held down by his neck and head.
Harris, who was in his 40s, was pronounced dead about an hour after the shooting, according to reports.
At a news conference, a Tulsa police sergeant said that Harris was “absolutely a threat when going down,” and a Sheriff’s captain reportedly claims that the arresting officers were not aware Harris had been shot, despite the gunshot noise and Bates’ admission on the scene.
Sadly, at this point, police say there are no plans to investigate the death, but that could change with what will undoubtably be an uproar surrounding the case.
SOURCE: The New York Daily News