On Sunday, March 18, around 9:18 p.m., Sacramento police responded to a call “that a thin, 6-foot-1 Black man wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and dark pants was hiding in a residential backyard after breaking car windows,” according to The Sacramento Bee. Just eight minutes later, officers fired over 20 times at 22-year-old Stephon Clark — in his own backyard. Reportedly, they “feared” for their lives because they saw a gun in his hand. It turned out he was only carrying a cellphone.
There has been an outpouring of support. A GoFundMe campaign page, which set a goal of $80,000, was created for Clark’s funeral expenses. Over the past eight days, 2,349 people contributed more than $79,080. In addition, the Reverend Al Sharpton announced Sunday that he would attend Clark’s funeral.
Last night, there was a city council meeting to discuss the city’s response to the shooting. Stevante Clark, Stephon’s brother, was in attendance and led protesters in a chant of his brother’s name. Standing in front of council chambers, Clark said, “The mayor and the city of Sacramento has failed all of you,” mentioning high rent, gang violence and poverty in the city.
Journalist Monique Judge said on Twitter, “The meeting has just been interrupted by Stevante Clark, Stephon’s brother. He ran into the meeting and began shouting his brother’s name” and the mayor is begging Stevante to stop, but he is continuing to speak. The mayor is now recessing the council meeting. It will resume in 15 minutes.” She reports the meeting eventually resumed, but their was a crowd of protesters in the vestibule and riot police eventually showed up.
Prayers up to everyone affected by this tragedy. We hope Stephon Clark’s family gets justice.