Society

Texas Cop Shoots, Kills Unarmed Naked Black Boy (Video)

| by Michael Allen
David JosephDavid Joseph

A newly released police dashcam video (below) shows former Austin, Texas, Police Officer Geoffrey Freeman fatally shooting and killing David Joseph, a naked unarmed black 17-year-old boy on Feb. 8.

In the video, Joseph is seen running in the direction of Freeman who shouts: "Stop right there man! Stop right there! Don't move! Don't move! Don't move! Don't move! Stop! Stop! Stop!"

As Freeman appears to run past Joseph and the police car, two shots are heard off-camera.

Freeman was answering a call about a "black male, tall, thin, wearing jeans, boxers" who allegedly "tried to chase a neighbor," but stopped, according to PhotographyisNotACrime.com,

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After the shooting, Freeman called in on his radio: "Shots fired, shots fired. Start units 10-18. He’s down. Go ahead and send EMS. He started coming running towards me and wouldn’t stop."

Freeman also told Joseph to breathe several times, but it's not clear if he was doing CPR on him.

Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo subsequently fired Freeman, and wrote in a memo: "Officer Freeman’s decision to draw his weapon when he exited his vehicle was unwarranted."

A Travis County grand jury decided Freeman will not be charged for killing the teen, reports KTBC.

Joseph's autopsy report showed he was shot from further than 2-3 feet away, and did have marijuana, promethazine (antihistamine for allergies) and alprazolam (for anxiety and panic disorders) in his body.

Freeman told investigators that he believed the teen "could possibly be experiencing excited delirium or maybe a mental breakdown of some sort," reports KTBC.

Freeman went on to describe an imagined scenario that he said could have happened had he not shot the 17-year-old boy:

I felt that he was going to -- if he had gotten to me he could have knocked me to the ground. The gun could have come out onto the ground somewhere and -- and -- and then -- or he could have grabbed the gun and we coulda been fighting over it and he could have taken it from me and -- and either shot me and then now we've got a man that's high runnin' around with the gun, you know. And -- and -- and I'm down on the floor either hurt seriously or -- or dead. And I shot. And, ya know, to keep that from happening.

Jeff Edwards, a lawyer for Joseph's family, told KTBC that Freeman could have stayed in his squad car and waited for backup, which was about 90 seconds away.

Fally Joseph, the brother of the teen, added: "Officer Freeman took David away from my family. He will never get to finish high school, go to college, have his own family, and take care of my mom like he always planned to."

Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday told KXAN in February: "Just because someone is naked, standing in the street, that they are not a danger to someone, I would tell you they are an extreme danger."

Casaday referred to a different case from 2005 to defend Freeman in 2016, whom described as a "fantastic person."

"We saw the football pictures that his [Joseph’s] family released yesterday, that’s an adult man," Casaday insisted.

Edwards, the Joseph family's attorney, told KTBC the teen weighed 140 pounds.

Sources: PhotographyIsNotACrime.com, KTBC, KXAN / Photo credit: Austin Police Department via YouTube

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