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Family disputes police account in shooting of unarmed California black man

24 March 2018

Though no violence occurred, tensions remained high between protesters and police, as crowds moved from Tower Bridge, then to the state Capitol and ultimately to the streets of downtown Sacramento - a route of about four miles, FOX 40 reported. The game started about 15 minutes late while the arena was mostly empty.

Protesters in California closed part of a motorway as they marched over the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man in Sacramento.

"The protests were sparked by the shooting death last weekend, of 22-year-old Stephon Clark in the backyard of his grandparents' home". They said there was no reason for police to open fire. Police previously said the officers fired 20 shots.

He said the city's first black police chief, Daniel Hahn, is doing what he can but protested over the actions of Mr Hahn's officers. When they catch up with them, one of the officers can be heard shouting "Hey, show me your hands" before shouting "gun" repeatedly, with shots ringing out shortly after. The 911 caller told police that a man had "busted both my truck windows out, and he's in people's backyards right now".

Sacramento police spokeswoman Matthew said Clark could have assumed police were in the area because a Sacramento County Sheriff's Department helicopter was circling overhead.

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"An officer responded "... something in his hands. At approximately 9:25 p.m., STAR advised they observed a subject in a backyard and began to direct SPD officers to him.

The officers believed it was a firearm and feared for their safety, the department said. Hahn said it does "seem excessive", but says investigators will determine if it violated police guidelines.

"On Sunday, we had a horrific, horrific tragedy in our community", he said. But Clark was only holding a cellphone.

The decision to compel release of the videos followed a series of controversial incidents, including one in July 2016 in which two Sacramento Police Department officers tried to strike a mentally ill homeless man with their cruiser.

Independent experts said the footage from body cameras and the police helicopter raise more questions than they answer. It is dark outside and a flashlight from one body camera briefly shows the backyard, but the man is not visible.

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Each officer had fired 10 bullets by the time it was over, the department said.

About seven uneventful minutes into the footage, the officers broke into a jog, running past unlit houses or dimly lit windows, and headed to another house. "I don't want them to be next", protester Tami Collins told Capital Public Radio.

Less than an hour before the protest, Mayor Darrell Steinberg said Clark's death warrants a thorough review of the shooting, and of police policies and procedures.

Sacramento police have declined to release the names of the officers involved in the shooting, saying they've been receiving death threats. City Councilman Larry Carr decried the loss of life and said police must provide timely information.

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Family disputes police account in shooting of unarmed California black man