( 4UMF NEWS ) Naked And Unarmed Teen Shot And Killed By Police:
David Joseph, a 17-year-old high school student shot and killed by a Texas police officer, was unarmed and naked when a cop gunned him down in an Austin suburb.
The shooting death boggled his friends, family and local civil rights activists who learned David was both unarmed and nude when Officer Geoffrey Freeman encountered the former football player in a residential street 10 miles north of the city’s downtown.
The teen’s family was notified of the his death Tuesday afternoon, who later demanded an investigation into what led to David’s death at 9 a.m. Monday.
“We are shocked and saddened,” wrote David’s family, issuing their only public statement Tuesday. “He was taken from us in an unexpected and violent way and (we) are struggling to understand how our child was stolen from us by the police.”
David, a senior at John B. Connally High School, “had a life full of possibilities in front of him,” his family wrote.
He would have graduated this spring He dreamed of going to college this fall. He loved music, played soccer and football. He was a varsity offensive linebacker with the Connally Cougars.
His classmates recalled their fallen friend as intelligent and funny.
“I don’t understand why he was naked and they felt the need to shoot him,” his friend, Samone Morales, 19, told KXAN-TV. “He could have been Tased maybe, something other than being shot. He didn’t deserve to be shot.”
A criminal and internal investigation will probe Freeman’s encounter with the teen, who was found naked in a street near the 12000 block of Nature’s Bend.
Freeman, a 10-year veteran of the Austin Police Department, had just spoken to residents claiming the black teen had chased a man around a nearby apartment complex.
The officer’s dash cam captured the initial encounter with the doomed teen, but it failed to record the moment he allegedly charged at Freeman after ignoring repeated commands to stop. Instead of using a Taser, the officer, who is also black, opened fire, killing David.
“We can tell you today, Mr. Joseph was not armed,” Assistant Austin Police Chief Brian Manley revealed at a press conference Tuesday.
Manley would not comment on Joseph’s mental health. An autopsy and toxicology report will determine whether drugs or alcohol were involved.
“We do value the sanctity of all life here at the department — both our officers and the communities,” Manley added.
Manley expressed his condolences to Joseph’s family, whose only public statement said, “David should not have been taken away from us.”
“No family should have to suffer like we are today,” Joseph’s relatives said.
The Travis County District Attorney will be present its findings to a grand jury.
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