A Phoenix Police officer shot and killed Rumain Brisbon, an African-American man, on Tuesday night.
Brandon Dickerson said he was in a car with Brisbon when they returned from a trip to McDonald's and an unidentified officer approached them. The officer had been given a tip that a car matching Brisbon's SUV was selling drugs.
"I didn't hear the police say nothing, I didn't hear them say freeze or anything of a police nature, I heard it afterwards, but I did not hear it before," Dickerson told KSAZ (video below).
However, the Phoenix Police Department claimed that Brisbon ran, cursed and wouldn't show his hands to the officer. Brisbon reportedly ran to an apartment where a woman let him in and the officer followed.
"During the struggle, Brisbon put his left hand in his pocket and the officer grabbed onto the suspect's hand, while repeatedly telling the suspect to keep his hand in his pocket," stated Phoenix Police spokesperson Sgt. Trent Crump, noted The Arizona Republic. "The officer believed he felt the handle of a gun while holding the suspect's hand in his pocket."
However, the object inside Brisbon's pocket was a bottle of Oxycontin medication, reports KPHO.
"The suspect is trying to remove his hand and ultimately the officers grip breaks, he breaks free and as soon as he does [the officer] pulls out his weapon," added Sgt. Crump.
The officer shot Brisbon twice, killing him.
"This one went bad from a standpoint of how it ended, but the officer was doing what we expect him to do, and that is fight crime," claimed Sgt. Crump.
"You couldn't handle the situation in a different way besides shooting?" Dickerson told KSAZ. "I find that a little far-fetched and hard to believe, we stay in America it's a police state, they're killin' all of us, that's how it goes."
Dickerson claimed that Brisbon was dropping off McDonald's food to his children in the apartment, which did have french fries scattered outside on the porch.
"Who's gonna argue with police?" Dickerson told The Arizona Republic. "He had no death wish yesterday."
"There are numerous witnesses that will challenge the police officer's account of what transpired," said Marci Kratter, a lawyer who represented Brisbon in a previous DUI case.
"Tonight, four children are missing their father, a woman is missing her husband and a mother is missing her son," added Kratter. "It was a senseless tragedy. He was unarmed and not a threat to anyone. We intend to pursue this to the full extent of the law."
The Arizona Republic says that court records show Brisbon was previously convicted of burglary and marijuana, and booked on suspicion of DUI twice in 2009.