Video shows Akron police kill Black man in hail of gunfire

  • Javon Williams, 13, is comforted by Rev. Jaland Finney, left, as he speaks during a march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Also pictured at center right is Lanette Williams, reacting after Javon's speech. Williams had just viewed the video released by police detailing the shooting death of Walker. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP)

    Javon Williams, 13, is comforted by Rev. Jaland Finney, left, as he speaks during a march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Also pictured at center right is Lanette Williams, reacting after Javon's speech. Williams had just viewed the video released by police detailing the shooting death of Walker. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP) Associated Press

  • Attorney Bobby DiCello, representing the family of Jayland Walker, holds up a photograph of Walker before he and his legal team give their statements after the City of Akron's news conference at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, where body cam video was shown of the police shooting of Walker almost a week earlier. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP)

    Attorney Bobby DiCello, representing the family of Jayland Walker, holds up a photograph of Walker before he and his legal team give their statements after the City of Akron's news conference at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, where body cam video was shown of the police shooting of Walker almost a week earlier. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • Sandra Dees, left, and Marquita Carter cry in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, after viewing the body cam footage of Jayland Walker's fatal shooting by Akron Police. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal via AP)

    Sandra Dees, left, and Marquita Carter cry in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, after viewing the body cam footage of Jayland Walker's fatal shooting by Akron Police. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • People walk in an NAACP-led march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP)

    People walk in an NAACP-led march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP) Associated Press

  • Summit County Sheriff's Office deputies are seen maintaining a security perimeter during an NAACP-led march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP)

    Summit County Sheriff's Office deputies are seen maintaining a security perimeter during an NAACP-led march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP) Associated Press

  • Javon Williams, 13, is comforted as he speaks during a march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Williams had just viewed the video released by police detailing the shooting death of Jayland Walker. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP)

    Javon Williams, 13, is comforted as he speaks during a march and rally for Jayland Walker, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Williams had just viewed the video released by police detailing the shooting death of Jayland Walker. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP) Associated Press

  • People stand in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center, Sunday, July 3, 2022 in Akron, Ohio, viewing the body cam footage of Jayland Walker's fatal shooting by Akron Police. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal via AP)

    People stand in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center, Sunday, July 3, 2022 in Akron, Ohio, viewing the body cam footage of Jayland Walker's fatal shooting by Akron Police. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • A woman stands in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, viewing the body cam footage of Jayland Walker's fatal shooting by Akron Police. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal via AP)

    A woman stands in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, viewing the body cam footage of Jayland Walker's fatal shooting by Akron Police. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • A man with the Nationwide Freedom Fighters watches over an NAAP-led march and rally for Jayland Walker as it passes in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP)

    A man with the Nationwide Freedom Fighters watches over an NAAP-led march and rally for Jayland Walker as it passes in front of the Harold K. Stubbs Justice Center, Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Andrew Dolph/Times Reporter via AP) Associated Press

  • Akron Chief of Police Stephen L. Mylett, left, speaks during a news conference as he stands next to Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, on the presentation of body cam videos in the police shooting of Jayland Walker. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP)

    Akron Chief of Police Stephen L. Mylett, left, speaks during a news conference as he stands next to Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, on the presentation of body cam videos in the police shooting of Jayland Walker. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • Akron Police body camera video showing the car chase involving Jayland Walker is presented during a news conference at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP)

    Akron Police body camera video showing the car chase involving Jayland Walker is presented during a news conference at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • Akron Deputy Mayor Marco S. Sommerville, right, watches the body cam videos as he sits next to Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan during a news conference at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, on the presentation of the body cam video in the police shooting of Jayland Walker. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said.(Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP)

    Akron Deputy Mayor Marco S. Sommerville, right, watches the body cam videos as he sits next to Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan during a news conference at the Firestone Park Community Center on Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Akron, Ohio, on the presentation of the body cam video in the police shooting of Jayland Walker. Walker was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of bullets, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said.(Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal via AP) Associated Press

 
 
Updated 7/4/2022 9:39 AM

AKRON, Ohio -- A Black man was unarmed when Akron police chased him on foot and killed him in a hail of gunfire, but officers believed he had shot at them earlier from a vehicle and feared he was preparing to fire again, authorities said Sunday at a news conference.

Akron police released video of the shooting of Jayland Walker, 25, who was killed June 27 in a pursuit that had started with an attempted traffic stop. The mayor called the shooting 'œheartbreaking' while asking for patience from the community.

 

It's not clear how many shots were fired by the eight officers involved, but Walker sustained more than 60 wounds. An attorney for Walker's family said officers kept firing even after he was on the ground.

Officers attempted to stop Walker's car around 12:30 a.m. for unspecified traffic and equipment violations, but less than a minute into a pursuit, the sound of a shot was heard from the car, and a transportation department camera captured what appeared to be a muzzle flash coming from the vehicle, Akron Police Chief Steve Mylett said. That changed the nature of the case from 'œa routine traffic stop to now a public safety issue," he said.

Police body camera videos show what unfolded after the roughly six-minute pursuit. Several shouting officers with guns drawn approach the slowing car on foot, as it rolls up over a curb and onto a sidewalk. A person wearing a ski mask exits the passenger door and runs toward a parking lot. Police chase him for about 10 seconds before officers fire from multiple directions, in a burst of shots that lasts 6 or 7 seconds.

At least one officer had tried first to use a stun gun, but that was unsuccessful, police said.

Mylett said Walker's actions are hard to distinguish on the video in real time, but a still photo seems to show him 'œgoing down to his waist area' and another appears to show him turning toward an officer. He said a third picture 'œcaptures a forward motion of his arm.'

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In a statement shared Sunday with reporters, the local police union said the officers thought there was an immediate threat of serious harm, and that it believes their actions and the number of shots will be found justified in line with their training and protocols. The union said the officers are cooperating with the investigation.

Police said more than 60 wounds were found on Walker's body but further investigation is needed to determine exactly how many rounds the officers fired and how many times Walker was hit.

The footage released by police ends with the officers' gunfire and doesn't show what happened next. Officers provided aid, and one can be heard saying Walker still had a pulse, but he was later pronounced dead, Mylett said.

The chief said an officer firing at someone has to be 'œready to explain why they did what they did, they need to be able to articulate what specific threats they were facing ... and they need to be held to account.' But he said he is withholding judgment on their actions until they give their statements.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

A handgun, a loaded magazine and an apparent wedding ring were found on the seat of the car. A casing consistent with the weapon was later found in the area where officers believed a shot had come from the vehicle.

State Attorney General Dave Yost vowed a 'œcomplete, fair and expert investigation" by the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and cautioned that 'œbody-worn camera footage is just one view of the whole picture."

Akron police are conducting a separate internal investigation about whether the officers violated department rules or policies.

The officers involved in the shooting are on paid administrative leave, which is standard practice in such cases. Seven of them are white, and one is Black, according to the department. Their length of service with Akron police ranges from one-and-a-half to six years, and none of them has a record of discipline, substantiated complaints or fatal shootings, it said.

Demonstrators marched peacefully through the city and gathered in front of the Akron justice center after the video was released. NAACP President Derrick Johnson said in a statement that Walker's death wasn't self-defense, but 'œwas murder. Point blank.'

Late Sunday, police in full riot gear fired a dozen tear gas cannisters to disperse a handful of protesters outside the justice center, WKYC-TV reported.

Walker's family is calling for accountability but also for peace, their lawyers said. One of the attorneys, Bobby DiCello, called the burst of police gunfire excessive and unreasonable, and said police handcuffed Walker before trying to provide first aid.

'œHow it got to this with a pursuit is beyond me,' DiCello said.

He said Walker's family doesn't know why he fled from police. Walker was grieving the recent death of his fiancee, but his family had no indication of concern beyond that, and he wasn't a criminal, DiCello said.

'œI hope we remember that as Jayland ran across that parking lot, he was unarmed,' DiCello said.

He said he doesn't know whether the gold ring found near the gun in the car belonged to Walker.

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