At least six of the eight bullets police shot into Stephon Clark‘s body hit him in the back, according to a new report that suggests the killing may not have happened as cops initially said. A forensic pathologist hired by Clark’s family to perform an autopsy independent of Sacramento County officials made the announcement Friday afternoon.
Police’s first account said Clark was not only facing them but advancing toward them when he was shot.
According to the Sacramento Bee, the autopsy found that Clark’s body had “four entry wounds in the lower part of Stephon’s back; one in the side of his neck, with an exit wound elsewhere in his neck; one in the back of his neck; one under an armpit entering from the side, with an exit wound on the other side of his body; and one in the outside of a leg.”
Police shot a total of 20 bullets at Clark.
The autopsy was performed by renowned pathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu, whose work examining concussions in the NFL was documented in a Hollywood movie that starred Will Smith.
“The proposition that he was facing the officers is inconsistent with the prevailing forensic evidence,”Omalu said during a press conference announcing the autopsy results. “He was facing the house, with his left to the officers. He wasn’t facing the officers. His left back was facing to the officers.”
Omalu added that Clark was not killed on the spot.
“It was not an instant death,” he said, which lends support to the accusation that police could have tried to save Clark’s life but instead muted their body cams immediately following the shooting and waited five minutes before getting medical aid.
Clark was shot and killed the night of March 18 in his grandmother’s backyard after a police chase. The father of two young children was 22 years old. Rev. Al Sharpton delivered the eulogy at Clark’s funeral in Sacramento on Thursday.
Pressure has been put on the local district attorney to bring murder charges against the officers involved with the shooting, but no announcements had been made as of Friday afternoon.