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Updated as of 11/21/2022 at 2:15 p.m. ET
The fatal shooting of Derrick Kittling by a Louisiana Sheriff’s deputy brought confusion after his family alleged the deputy’s account of the incident differed from a bystander’s video footage, per VICE. The LSPD released the full video of altercation, which Kittling’s family attorneys believe proves the use of deadly force was unnecessary, per WAFB.
“The newly-released footage in the Derrick Kittling case confirms what we had suspected from our initial review of the facts: Derrick‘s killing was unwarranted and completely preventable. We believe that Deputy Rodney Anderson profiled Derrick from the moment he initiated this out-of-jurisdiction traffic stop for window tint and a modified exhaust,” said attorneys Benjamin Crump and Ronald Haley in a statement.
The two also called for the termination of the officer’s employment.
Here’s a recap of the video from Town Talk:
The video, released during a news conference at State Police Troop E headquarters in Alexandria, shows Kittling standing at the rear of his silver Chevrolet Silverado pickup. The video shows Kittling asking Anderson why he was being stopped. Anderson does not answer the question.
Kittling and Anderson then engage in a struggle. In the video, Kittling, 45, reaches for Anderson’s Taser and a struggle ensues. The Taser was fired at least twice, the video shows, but it was unclear whether it hit Kittling or the deputy.
After shooting Kittling, Anderson immediately radios that a subject had been shot in the head and calls for an ambulance. Anderson also sustained minor injuries during the struggle and can be heard in the video as he radios that he is bleeding from the head.
State Police superintendent Col. Lamar Davis said his agency is still trying to figure out whether the Taser hit Kittling or the deputy after it was fired.
“You can hear the taser being deployed. Which means the reason [the officer] felt deadly force needed to be used is because [Kittling] was reaching for what was essentially an unloaded weapon. Because if the taser had been deployed, [Kittling] could get the taser all he wants, but there’s nothing that can happen to the deputy,” attorney Ronald Haley said to VICE.
Originally, the Rapides Parish police alleged Nov. 6, Kittling, 45, was pulled over for an unspecified traffic stop when a physical confrontation ensued between him and the sheriff’s deputy. The sheriff’s office claimed Kittling grabbed the deputy’s Taser, leading the deputy to fire a fatal shot at Kittling. Kittling died later at a local hospital.
However, attorneys for Kittling’s family suggested the department gave a fabricated account after reviewing two videos taken by witnesses who saw the incident unfold, per VICE. In one video, Anderson is seen wrestling with Kittling on the ground and the Taser is heard being deployed. At one point Anderson stands above Kittling who was putting his hand up and takes aim with his gun.
In a second video obtained by VICE, one bystander states Kittling was unarmed and the deputy grabs his radio and reports a gunshot wound to Kittlings’ head.
“He couldn’t handle that man, he was trying to tase him for no reason, pulling that man out the truck. That man had a family, man. You didn’t have to kill that man,” said one bystander in the video.
Without the bystander’s videos, this could have easily been swept under the rug. Situations like these are precisely why police want to be protected from bystander recordings. If there’s no video evidence to prove an officer was out of line, they can escape an investigation.