Newly released body camera footage shows the fatal shooting of another black man at the hands of Chicago police, even as he appeared to be trying to run away from officers.
The Civilian Order of Police Accountability in Chicago on Wednesday released the footage of Maurice Granton Jr.’s fatal shooting, which occurred on June 6 as police were conducting a drug investigation on Chicago’s South Side, ABC news reports.
In the footage, Granton can be seen climbing an iron fence. He was on the fence when an officer on the other side shoots him. Granton falls to the ground, with the officer telling him to “stay down” while pointing his gun at him. Granton is seen writhing on the ground.
“There’s a weapon right there,” one officer could be heard saying to a colleague. “Go get the weapon.”
Another officer is then seen climbing to the other side of the fence as people start to gather. One of them calls out to Granton.
“Hey, Maurice,” the witness can be heard yelling several times.
Bystanders start to gather, expressing outrage.
The officer who fired the shot appeared to try to assure the crowd that Maurice was fine, repeating “Maurice woke. He woke.”
At this point multiple officers were on the same side of the fence as Granton, apparently securing the alleged weapon, but no one actually really approaches Granton to see if he is okay, or administers aid, and would not do so for several minutes.
Granton’s father, Maurice Granton Sr. told reporters that his son was “left on ground like an animal,” according to the Chicago Tribune.
“I’m just seeking justice,” he said. “It was a coldblooded murder.”
As ABC notes, an initial statement issued by the department following the shooting claimed that officers chased Granton after he ran, and that he was shot after he allegedly displayed a weapon when officers ordered him to stop. (Mind you, Granton was scaling an iron wrought fence when the first shot was fired).
After the shooting, the department released surveillance footage that they claimed showed him reaching into his pocket for a weapon, although it is unclear what the person in the video is actually reaching for. Police did say a weapon was recovered from the scene, but Granton’s family said that it did not belong to him.
Granton Sr. told reporters that “at no point” was his son armed.
“He was running,” Granton Sr. said.
Attorney Antonio Romanucci told the Tribune that the gun was found some 20 to 25 feet away from Granton’s body.
“If you’re a young man in the city of Chicago, do not run from the Chicago police,” he said. “Maurice did not have a weapon in his hand when he was shot.”
“We do not know if Maurice Granton was holding that gun. We do not know if that gun was fired,” Romanucci added. “We don’t know anything about the gun except the narrative that the Chicago Police Department issued on the day of the shooting.”
Two days after the shooting, the Cook County Medical Examiner confirmed that Granton was shot in the back, ABC reports.
Granton’s family is expected to file a civil lawsuit against the police department.
Meanwhile, the Chicago Police Department claims that it is “fully cooperating” with the Civilian Order of Police Accountability’s investigation.
“We continue to provide COPA with any and all requested information and fully support their methodical review of the facts,” a statement from the department read. “As of this time, COPA has not requested that any of the officers involved be relieved of police powers.”
The officer who fired the fatal shots was identified as Sheldon Trasher, who is black, the Tribune notes. Both Thrasher and another officer who was involved in the shooting have returned to active duty after taking the required 30-day leave following the shooting.