It’s been a rough week in America. Following on the heels of Missouri police killing a 37-year-old black man named Arlon Sterling, another man was brutally killed for an unnecessary reason.
Minnesota-based CBS News reports that a 32-year-old man named Philander Castile died from an officer-involved shooting Wednesday night. His mother told the press that minutes after being admitted to the hospital, he passed away from his wounds.
Many claim that the incident should never have escalated to the degree that it did. And, after watching the video his girlfriend, Diamond Reynold, captured, you’ll likely agree.
Castile, Reynold, and Reynold’s 4-year-old daughter were driving in the car when police pulled them over for a broken tail light. Reportedly, a cop approached the car and told Castile, who was at the wheel, to show his license and registration.
As the African-American man reached for his license, he informed the officer that he had a firearm in his possession and a cancel-and-carry permit. That’s when the officer shot Castile four times.
At one point, the officer in the video screams, “I told him not to reach for it! I told him to get his hand out…”
Reynolds then replies:
“You told him to get his I.D., sir, his driver’s license.”
In what can only be described as a heartbreaking moment, Reynolds then pans the camera over her bleeding boyfriend. She cries,
“Oh my God, please don’t tell me he’s dead. Please don’t tell me my boyfriend just went like that.”
According to Shaun King of the New York Daily News, the video was removed shortly after Reynolds posted it to Facebook. Activists have since uploaded it again and to other social media sites, however.
This horrific incident is evidence of the increasing racial disparity in the U.S. Unfortunately, like the Pulse nightclub shooting which took place in Florida last month which was blamed on Muslims, police brutality against minorities is resulting in division among the American people.
USUncut relays that Castile worked at the J.J. Hill Montessori School in St. Paul as a cafeteria supervisor. On July 16 of this year, he would have been 33 years old.
The officers who were present at the scene are members of the St. Anthony Police Department, and the cop who shot Castile is a five-year veteran of the force.
Please don’t let this young man’s death be in vain. Share this article to raise awareness about his abrupt ending. Division will never be the solution, as #AllLivesMatter, but starting a conversation about the issue of police misconduct and collaborating with other activists may result in transformational change. Please comment your thoughts below.