Video footage of deadly police shooting in Louisiana released

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Footage of a deadly traffic stop in central Louisiana between a black motorist and a white officer, which turned into a 30-second ground fight before the officer fired his gun, has been released by state police.

Ben Crump, a prominent civil rights attorney representing the family of Derrick J. Kittling – the 45-year-old motorist who was fatally shot in the head during the incident – called the death “unjustified” and “entirely avoidable.” In addition, Crump called for the officer involved — Rodney Anderson, deputy sheriff for the Rapides community — to be fired and accused him of profiling Kittling. The deputy has been placed on administrative leave while the Louisiana State Police investigate the incident.

“Law enforcement officers who act without regard for the deadly consequences of the use of force should not serve our communities,” said Crump, who has handled some of the most high-profile black police killings in the country, including representing the families of Trayvon Martin, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd. “This community deserves to know that law enforcement will protect and serve in their communities and not cause mortal harm.

Video of the shooting on November 6 – captured by the MP’s body-worn camera, the dashboard camera in his squad car and also captured by a nearby bystander – was released on Sunday “to give the community a better understanding”. . case, said Lt. Melissa Matey, a spokesman for the state police.

The video begins with Anderson Kittling, driving a pickup truck, pulling over Col. Lamar Davis, the Louisiana State Superintendent, in a residential Alexandria area at about 1:20 p.m. for a “violation with his window tint and modified exhaust.” , told reporters on Sunday.

After Kittling has stopped the truck, he gets out – without being asked – and takes a few steps away from the vehicle. Anderson tells Kittling three times to go to the back of the truck and also tells him to keep his hands out of his pockets. Kittling agrees.

As Anderson walks up to Kittling, he says, “For me, stand in the back of your — stand in your truck. Face the truck.”

“What is the problem?” Kittling asks while looking at the deputy.

“Because you’re excited. You turn around and don’t follow anything,” Anderson replies, grabbing Kittling’s wrist.

“I’m following. I can’t hear anything,” Kittling replies, gesturing to his ear with his free hand. He then asks the deputy if he can get his phone, and Anderson, still holding his wrist, tells him, “Come on We still. Just turn around and face the truck.”

Anderson grabs Kittling’s wrist with both hands as Kittling asks, “What have I done? What’s wrong with you? Why are you grabbing me man?”

The deputy tells Kittling to put his hands behind his back—grab the man’s wrists—several times when Kittling asks, “For what?”

At no point in the recorded interaction did Anderson tell Kittling why he was pulled over. When asked if Anderson followed proper procedure for a traffic stop, Davis said he was unsure of the sheriff’s office’s guidelines and protocol.

Anderson is seen unholstering his taser and a fight ensues, with Kittling grabbing the deputy’s wrist and both men falling to the ground.

As the men grapple on the floor, Anderson’s body cam shows a close-up double-taser fight. It is not clear from the footage whether the taser prongs hit either man. At one point, state police said Anderson lost his taser and Kittling retrieved it. Seconds later, a shot is heard from the officer’s gun.

“Shots fired. Shots fired,” Anderson says into his radio. He walks back to his SUV while Kittling lies motionless on the ground. “Shots fired. One topic down. gunshot wound to the head. I’m bleeding from my head.”

Kittling was taken to a local hospital but was pronounced dead. Anderson had minor injuries, according to police.

Davis asked the community to “remain patient as we continue to conduct a very thorough investigation.”

“There are witnesses we need to question. We have additional evidence that we need to secure… Next, we need to continue to conduct a very thorough investigation,” Davis said. “We will not take any shortcuts. We will pull every stone to ensure we get the facts for this investigation.”