close and back to page

Charges Dropped Against Black Boy Who Played With a Toy Gun

Zahiem Salahuddin was arrested and faced simple assault, reckless endangerment and possession of an "instrument of crime" charges just for using a toy.

Defender Association of Philadelphia

Zahiem Salahuddin, a 13-year-old 8th grade student, was playing with his friends on the basketball court in Grays Ferry, Pa., this past summer. Salahuddin had a plastic toy gun that shot an orange plastic ball. A white boy was hit with the plastic ball. It was unclear which child shot the ball that hit the other child.

Salahuddin rode his bike home later, but was stopped by men in a black pickup truck who told him he shot at a Philadelphia police officer's son. Police in marked cars then arrived and Salahuddin was arrested, charged, and spent three days in jail.

For an orange plastic ball from a $3.50 toy, he faced simple assault, reckless endangerment and possession of an "instrument of crime."

Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner has informed the Defender Association of Philadelphia that his office will withdraw juvenile charges on Thursday, according to Philly.com.

Read More Show Less

Botham Jean's Killer is Fired

Texas Rangers still have no new information as Jean was buried in St. Lucia today.

TWITTER

Dallas Police reported an internal investigation is complete, and Officer Amber Guyger, who killed Botham Jean three weeks ago, has been fired.

Read More Show Less

Update: Officer's Story of S​hooting Botham Jean Contradicts Witnesses

Witnesses say they heard the officer say, "Let me in. Let me in."

TWITTER

Botham "Bo" Jean was killed around 10 p.m. on Thursday night by Amber Guyger, a four-year veteran of the Dallas police department, who just ended her shift and returned to her apartment complex.

The 911 call said she cried after shooting Jean in the chest, and apologized saying she thought it was her apartment. Her arrest warrant says that Guyger reports drawing her gun when she saw a figure in the dark apartment, giving verbal commands—which were ignored—and then firing two shots.

But witnesses, according to the family lawyers, say that they heard sounds and talking that contradict that report.

"They heard knocking down the hallway followed by a woman's voice that they believe to be officer Guyger saying, 'Let me in. Let me in,'" attorney Lee Merritt said.

After the gunshots, a man's voice was heard.

"What we believe to be the last words of Botham Jean which was 'Oh my god, why did you do that?'" Merritt said.

There were two witnesses, Caitlyn Simpson and Yasmine Hernandez, that heard a lot of noise on the fourth floor that night, including 'police talk', like: "Open up!"

There was also a video taken by witnesses of Jean being rolled out on a stretcher, with EMS performing chest compressions on him.

Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson is collecting all of the evidence before presenting to a grand jury, which could decide to up the charges to murder.

"We're going to unravel what we need to unravel, unturn what we need to unturn, and present a full case to the grand jury of Dallas County," Johnson said.

Protests were held Monday night outside the police department as questions still remain:

What were the results of the blood test for Guyger, and why did police respond from 30 miles away, rather than Dallas police headquarters that was two blocks away?

The family's lawyers are also still asking why Guyger was allowed to leave the scene without handcuffs and not be arrested for three days. "You or I would be arrested if we went to the wrong apartment and blow a hole in a person's chest, killing them," said Benjamin Crump.

The officer was arrested Sunday, and released on $300,000 bail as of Monday. She is on paid administrative leave.

Botham Jean's funeral is on Thursday.

Related Story: Dallas Police Department's Attempt to Demonize Murder Victim, Botham Jean, is Disgusting

Related Story: Update: Botham Jean Celebrated Amid the Urging of Officer Guyger to Come Clean

Related story: White Police Officer Charged With Manslaughter for Shooting Black Man in His Own Apartment

"Let me in": Witnesses dispute cop account of Botham Jean shooting, attorney says

White Police Officer Charged With Manslaughter for Shooting Black Man in His Own Apartment

Dallas family protested the officer being free and on leave for three days after the killing.

SCREENSHOT FROM "CBS THIS MORNING" BROADCAST

Dallas police officer Amber Guyger, who is white, fatally shot a 26-year-old Black man, Botham Jean, in his own apartment on Thursday, claiming she entered what she thought was her own home.

Read More Show Less

Thurman Blevins reportedly was drinking gin and shooting a gun in the air on June 23 in a Minneapolis, Minn., neighborhood. When police arrived on the scene, Blevins was sitting on the curb with his girlfriend and baby.

From bodycam footage released Sunday, the police are heard saying he's got a gun and they jumped out of their car.

A chase ensues, and an officer yells that if Blevins doesn't put down his gun, the officer was "going to f*cking shoot" him.

Seconds later, Blevins is shot dead in the back.

If Blevins was shooting a gun recklessly, he was endangering the public. But some argue that the situation could've been de-escalated by police instead of using deadly force. The aggressive comment the officer made also colors the situation.

Minneapolis NAACP president Leslie Badue said in a Facebook post, "Eye witnesses stated he was killed while running away from the officers. The witnesses say that he was sitting on the curb with his girlfriend and baby. The cup that he was drinking can still be seen at the scene."

Ron Davis, former head of the Justice Department's Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), has said activists, cops and experts can argue over proving or disproving bias, but it doesn't matter to those who are shot.

"From the community that's receiving it," he said, "it doesn't feel like disparity. It feels like bias — it feels like racism."

Protests ensued and the reports of Blevins' possession of a gun were conflicting. But deadly force by police is used against people of color more than whites.

Data collected from the nation's largest police departments showed: police shot at least 1,670 Black people from 2010 through 2016, which is 55 percent of the total and more than double the share of the Black population in these communities. It also showed Blacks shot by police were more likely to be committing a robbery or involved in a shooting. Whites were more often involved in suicide attempts or domestic violence incidents and other serious crimes.

Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo and mayor Jacob Frey have not commented on the incident and a criminal investigation into the shooting of Blevins is still pending.

Both officers Justin Schmidt and Ryan Kelly are currently on leave.

Chicago Mayor Pleads for Calm Amid Protests as Trial Date Set in Laquan McDonald Shooting

Police publicized video footage in the Harith Augustus shooting quickly, but tensions remain high as the city prepares for the upcoming, long-awaited McDonald trial.

REUTERS

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has asked his city to remain calm as protests carry on for the shooting of a Black man by police — and as a trial date is set for the officer who fatally shot Laquan McDonald in 2014.

Read More Show Less

NYPD Tells Justice Department to Move Forward with Eric Garner Case, Family Calls BS

"We don't want politics to play a part, we just want justice," said Gwen Carr, Garner's mother.

REUTERS

The New York Police Department told the Department of Justice it has until the end of August to move forward with taking action in the death of Eric Garner, or else it will take matters into its own hands. Meanwhile, on the fourth anniversary of his death, Garner's family asks why they can't just take action now.

Read More Show Less

After 8 Protests in Pittsburgh, Cop Who Killed Antwon Rose Charged with Criminal Homicide

District attorney said the officer's actions were intentional; officer had a history of violence toward "a certain type of person."

KDKA PITTSBURGH

The officer who shot and killed 17-year-old Antwon Rose, another unarmed Black male, was charged with criminal homicide on Wednesday, following eight protests over five days across Pittsburgh.

Read More Show Less

​Black Teen Shot in the Back While Running from White Police

No body or dash cams, a newly sworn in officer and no consideration.

FACEBOOK

Three hours on the job in East Pittsburgh, Penn., and a white officer's first response is to shoot multiple rounds into unarmed Antwon Rose, a Black 17-year-old, running away. The officer didn't run after the teen or Tase him, but instead cuffed an almost lifeless body. Rose died on the way to the hospital.

Read More Show Less

Officers Thought Stephon Clark Was 'Pretending' To Be Dead: Video

Officers waited more than five minutes to approach him after shooting him — and then handcuffed him before attempting CPR.

Stevante Clark, brother of Stephon Clark, hugs a supporter at a rally. / REUTERS

New video footage shows that police believed Stephon Clark was faking his death after officers fired 20 bullets at him, a possible example of him being perceived as a threat due to the color of his skin.

Read More Show Less

Ex-Cop Walks Free in Deadly Shooting of Homeless Black Man

The LAPD chief even recommended the former officer be prosecuted.

Brendon Glenn / FACEBOOK

A former Los Angeles Police Department officer will face no charges for killing an unarmed Black homeless man three years ago — despite, unusually, the police chief calling for prosecution.

Read More Show Less

Officer Fired for Shooting Black Man for Sitting in His Own Truck

Tweet from Jones family attorney: "If #LyndoJones shot an off duty cop multiple times in the back, there would be no BREAKING NEWS about him being fired from his job while the @Dallas_DA awaits a decision from the GJ. He would've been arrested & charged (if he survived the arrest). #equalprotection #waronbadcops."

TWITTER

A 10-year Texas police veteran who shot and critically wounded a Black man for "burglarizing" his own pickup truck has been effectively fired.

Read More Show Less
© Copyright 2018 — DiversityInc All Rights Reserved.