Sacramento Police have released disturbing video footage of the moment two cops shot an unarmed Black man in his grandparents’ backyard.
Stephon Clark, 23, was killed on Sunday after two officers responded to a 911 call and opened fire. The officers thought he was responsible for breaking three car windows and say they believed he was armed. In the video, you can hear one of the cops yelling, “Show me your hands! Gun! Gun! Gun!” just moments before they both opened fire. But Clark didn’t have a gun—what the cops thought was a firearm was actually his iPhone.
The video starts with Clark approaching a home with officers yelling, “Show me your hands! Stop! Stop!” They chase him into a darkened backyard before opening fire.
On the aerial helicopter footage, Clark can be seen jumping the fence into his grandparents’ backyard while two police officers approach from the front driveway. Clark can then be seen running as the officer’s chase after him before firing 20 shots at him within only a few seconds of entering the yard.
The shooting took place on Sunday, March 19, and the Sacramento Police Department released a statement saying, “After an exhaustive search, scene investigators did not locate any firearms. The only item found near the suspect was a cell phone.”
The two cops, who are still unidentified, have been placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation.
Mayor of Sacramento Darrell Steinberg issued a statement Tuesday, and while he did call the shooting “tragic” he also added, “I viewed the videos carefully. Based on the videos alone, I cannot second-guess the split-second decisions of our officers and I’m not going to do that.”
Clark is survived by his girlfriend and two sons, Cairo, 1, and Aiden, 3.