UPDATE: Shutting it Down
Autopsy results show that Stephon Clark was shot seven times in the back, challenging claims made by the Sacramento Police Department that Clark was facing officers and approaching them at the time of his death.
Out of the 20 rounds fired, a total of eight bullets entered Clark’s body.
UPDATE 04/03/2018 03:28 PM PST: Lawmakers and the family of Stephon Clark have proposed that California become the first state to heavily restrict when officers are allowed to fire their weapons. The proposed legislation would change the standard for firing one’s weapon from “reasonable force” to “necessary force.” American Civil Liberties Union legislative advocate Lizzie Buchen said that the change would mean law enforcement could only shoot if “there were no other reasonable alternatives to the use of deadly force.”
UPDATE 04/02/2018 03:50 PM PST: On Saturday, March 31, protesters gathered once again to protest the violent police murder of Stephon Clark. During the protests a sheriff’s deputy vehicle reportedly accelerated towards 61-year-old protester Wanda Cleveland, and struck her before driving away. Cleveland was taken to a local hospital for injuries to her wrist and head.
The results were announced by Dr. Bennet Omalu, a forensic pathologist retained by the Clark family to conduct a separate autopsy.
Omalu also announced that Clark’s death was, “not instantaneous,” and estimated that it most likely took 3-10 minutes after the first bullet entered his body before he died.
However, it is unclear whether or not it would’ve made a difference if law enforcement had approached Clark to administer medical attention sooner than the five minutes they waited, as each bullet “possessed a fatal capacity,” according to Omalu.
“Meaning that, out of all the seven, all he needed to have died was just one of the seven.” – Dr. Bennet Omalu
The official autopsy released by the Sacramento County Coroner released earlier this week listed the cause of death as multiple gun shot wounds, and listed the preliminary cause of death as homicide.
The County Coroner has also said that it will withhold the total number of gunshots that hit Clark until further notice.
“From the time this investigation began, statements provided by the Sacramento Police Department have proven to be self-serving, untrustworthy, and unreliable,” – Benjamin Crump, lawyer for the Clark family.
Approximately 300 people attended Clark’s funeral this past Thursday at the Bayside of South Sacramento Church, while another estimated 600 people waited outside the church.
The Reverend Al Sharpton delivered the eulogy at Clark’s funeral, and defended the actions of protesters who, in recent days, have delayed two Sacramento King’s basketball games and shut down Interstate 5.
Sharpton also clapped back at White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ claim that, “This is something that is a local matter and something that we feel should be left up to the local authorities at this point in time,” saying:
“No, this is not a local matter. They’ve been killing young black men all over the country.”
This autopsy diagram was shown at a press conference and details the points of entry of the bullets that entered Clark’s body from behind. Additional bullets struck Clark’s side and left thigh.
You can read Iron Triangle Press’ original story here.