- Protests erupted in Philadelphia on Monday night over the killing of a local Black man earlier that day.
- Two police officers repeatedly shot Walter Wallace Jr., 27, in front of a crowd of onlookers after yelling at him to drop a knife. Wallace was later pronounced dead at the hospital.
- During Monday night’s protests several local businesses were looted and vandalised, and police said a 56-year-old female officer was run over by a speeding pickup truck.
- The officer was hospitalized overnight with a broken leg but is in stable condition, the police told NBC Philadelphia. At least 30 officers were injured in total, the outlet reported.
- More than 30 people were arrested for various charges including looting and throwing rocks and bricks at the police, NBC Philadelphia reported, citing the police.
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Two unnamed Philadelphia police officers shot and killed Walter Wallace Jr., 27, around 4 p.m. Monday afternoon, after getting a call about a man armed with a knife.
Bystander video showed Wallace’s mother initially trying to hold him back and deescalate the situation, before he breaks free and starts walking towards the officers, prompting them to fire several shots.
The footage also showed an officer shouting “put the knife down” before shooting. Witnesses told WPVI that Wallace had a knife.
One of the officers drove Wallace to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Almost immediately, crowds began to gather at the scene of the shooting, expressing anger over why police didn’t use less lethal force.
“Why didn’t they use a Taser?” Wallace’s father, Walter Wallace Sr., told the Inquirer. “His mother was trying to defuse the situation.”
Wallace Sr. said his son had a mental illness and was on medication.
“He has mental issues,” Wallace Sr. said. “Why you have to gun him down?”
Protests turned violent at night
Later Monday evening, the unrest turned violent, with some throwing rocks and bricks at the police, and setting vehicles on fire, according to NBC Philadelphia.
A speeding pickup truck also struck a 56-year-old female officer, the outlet reported. The officer, who was not named, was hospitalized overnight with a broken leg, but was in stable condition on Tuesday morning, NBC Philadelphia said.
A total of 30 officers were injured, mostly for being hit by debris, the police told NBC Philadelphia. As of Tuesday morning, all but the 56-year-old officer had been treated and released from the hospital, the outlet reported.
While the looting and vandalism was initially concentrated in the West Philadelphia area, there were similar incidents reported in Centre City, North Philly, and Germantown as well, NBC Philadelphia reported.
More than 30 people were arrested for various charges including looting and throwing rocks and bricks at the police, NBC Philadelphia reported, citing the police.
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw was on the scene Monday afternoon, speaking with members of the community. Later that day she released a statement assuring that a full investigation over Wallace’s death would be conducted, according to WPVI.
The two officers who were involved in the killing have been taken off street duty while an investigation is carried out, according to the police.
Outlaw said in a statement: “I recognise that the video of the incident raises many questions. Residents have my assurance that those questions will be fully addressed by the investigation. While at the scene this evening, I heard and felt the anger of the community. Everyone involved will forever be impacted.”
She added that she and Mayor Jim Kenney of Philadelphia would meet with Wallace’s family members “as soon as it can be scheduled.”
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