Protesters and police in Memphis were in a standoff Monday night at the scene where cops shot and wounded a Black man who fled a traffic stop.
The man was identified by his mother as 25-year-old Martavious Banks, a father of two, according to WREG-TV. He was transported to Regional One Hospital in critical condition.
Police officers chased the “armed male driver” after the traffic stop at 6:30 p.m., the Memphis Police Department said. He was shot during “a confrontation” with the cops. Officials did not immediately identify the suspect and the officers involved. It is an ongoing investigation.
A police spokesperson said the driver was running towards a house and a gun was also found in the area, the Commercial Appeal reported. Investigators will review officers’ body cameras and vehicle dashboard video.
Banks’ family and activists gathered at the shooting site, near the area cordoned off by the police. His’ mother, Janice Banks, was reportedly one of the most vocal protesters, questioning the police version of the shooting.
“There’s a cover-up!” shouted Janice Banks, according to Commercial Appeal.
She alleged that the police shot her son over minor warrants. He had several outstanding warrants, including a probation violation and driving with a suspended license, a search by Commercial Appeal found. The mother said her son did not have a gun.
“If he shot, show me the bullets. He’s at the hospital, do a test kit on his hands. Let me see the proof that he shot a gun,” she said.
Janice Banks and many of the protesters accused the police of shooting Martavious Banks in the back and firing into an occupied house, according to the newspaper.
Videos from the protest showed the police allowing Janice Banks and a few other family members to cross the police line for a private conversation. But that didn’t seem to calm her anger.
The protesters demanded an independent investigation by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. Tempers flared when the police reportedly said that’s unlikely to happen because no one died.