A standoff between a wheelchair-bound man and Delaware police officers ended tragically when the disabled man was shot to death in a blast of gunfire on Wednesday afternoon, CNN reports.
The disabled man, identified as Jeremy McDole, was reportedly suicidal when police were called to the 1800 block of Tulip Street in Wilmington. McDole was suffering from an alleged self-inflected gunshot wound from a .38 caliber gun.
Police arrived on the scene guns drawn and ordered the 28-year-old to drop his firearm.
A bystander’s recording shows McDole adjusting in his wheelchair after the first shot is heard. It isn’t known if McDole or an officer fired the shot. Less than a minute later, the officers are heard ordering McDole to put his hands up. Instead, the disabled man can be seen putting his hands in his lap. Over ten shots are then fired at McDole, who slumps to the left side of the wheelchair and falls to the ground.
McDole died on scene.
The police chief in Wilmington, Delaware, defended his officers Thursday. The handicapped man, Jeremy McDole, was armed with a .38 caliber gun — the same one he’d apparently used on himself earlier, Chief Bobby Cummings said. And he never complied with the officers’ requests.
“When Mr. McDole began to remove the weapon from his waist, the officers engaged him,” Cummings said. In other words, the officers opened fire because they were concerned McDole might fire his weapon at them.
The victim’s mother, Phyllis McDole, told reporters that other tactics could have been used, such as rubber bullets or a taser. Calling the shooting unjust, Phyllis said she demands answers from the police.
Phyllis McDole alluded to a video — which Cummings acknowledged but said he hasn’t authenticated — which she said shows that her son “didn’t pull a weapon. He had his hands in his lap.”
Wilmington Mayor Dennis Williams assured the family they will have those answers as the investigation continues.
The officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave.
SOURCE: CNN | VIDEO CREDIT: YouTube
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