Philando Castile

Philando CastilePolice shooting streamed live

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compiled from various sources – October 2017
submitted by – Neelam Bi

Any news updates listed at the foot of this item

On 6 July 2016, Philando Castile, aged 32, was fatally shot by Jeronimo Yanez, a St. Anthony Minnesota police officer, after being pulled over in Falcon Heights, a suburb of St. Paul. Philando was driving a car with his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and her four year-old daughter as passengers when he was pulled over for having a faulty break light by Yanez and another officer. Philando told the officer he was licensed to carry a weapon and had one in the car.

His girlfriend said; “The officer said don’t move. As he was putting his hands back up, the officer shot him in the arm four or five times.” Prosecutors would later say that what should have been a routine traffic stop spiralled out of control when Officer Yanez overreacted to the presence of Mr. Castile’s lawfully carried gun and shot him despite pleas that he was not reaching for the weapon.

Diamond Reynolds live-streamed a video on Facebook in the immediate aftermath of the shooting. It showed her interacting with the armed officer as a mortally injured Philando lay slumped over, moaning in pain with his left arm and side bloodied. In the video Diamond can be heard saying; “You shot four bullets into him, sir. He was just getting his licence and registration, sir,”

Police released statements that an investigation was under way and the officer involved would be put on leave. Philando’s mother, Valerie Castile, told CNN that her son was just “black in the wrong place” and said there was “a silent war against African-American people.”

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s office ruled Philando’s death a homicide and said he had sustained multiple gunshot wounds. The office reported that Philando Castile died at 9:37pm in the emergency room of the Hennepin County Medical Centre, about 20 minutes after being shot.

Philando’s death follows the death of Alton Sterling, who was shot dead by police during an incident in Baton Rouge. Hundreds of people protested for two nights over Alton’s killing. The two deaths follow a long line of high-profile incidents involving African-Americans dying at the hands of the police, igniting a national debate about the use of lethal force.

As news of the Philando’s shooting spread, up to 200 people protested outside the St Paul home of Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton, who later requested a federal investigation into the shooting. Diamond Reynolds told protesters that she had filmed the incident so “the world knows that these police are not here to protect and serve us, they are here to assassinate us.”

Also in a statement on Facebook, President Barack Obama said all Americans “should be deeply troubled” by the two fatal shootings. He said it was clear that they were not isolated incidents but “symptomatic of the broader challenges within our criminal justice system.”

Philando’s cousin Antonio Johnson told the Star Tribune newspaper he was “immediately criminally profiled” because he was black.

Philando has been remembered as a kind, peaceful man who knew the names of all the children at the school where he worked and took pride in managing the cafeteria. His mother, Valerie, urged that any public protests should remain peaceful and said her family was pleased with the decision to bring charges. “We all hope and pray that the right thing is done,” she said.

In February 2017 an was order issued by Ramsey County District Judge William Leary denying a defence motion to have the charges against Jeromino Yanez dismissed on the grounds they lacked probable cause.

In June 2016 the family of Philando reached a $3 million settlement with the city of St. Anthony Village. The settlement followed the acquittal of Yanez on 16 June 2017 of second-degree manslaughter and two counts of intentional discharge of a firearm that endangers safety.


Follow-up News:

Valerie Castile keeps Philando’s legacy alive
5 June 2019

Family of Philando Castile reaches $3M settlement in police shooting case
26 June 2016

Case against officer in Philando Castile’s death going to trial
15 February 2017

Officer who shot Philando Castile is charged with manslaughter
16 November 2016

Philando Castile death: Aftermath of police shooting streamed live
7 July 2016

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