Cops Allegedly Shot Handcuffed Black Man, Claimed He Shot Himself
The father of a young black man claims that Louisiana State Police fatally shot his son while he was handcuffed but the police claim the handcuffed young man shot himself.
On March 3, Louisiana State Police released a statement saying 22-year-old Victor White III shot himself in an Iberia Parish police car while he was handcuffed in the back of the cruiser.
Six months later, the Iberia Parish coroner has finally released White’s autopsy results and found that White was shot from the front, not the back as police said. Despite that, the coroner is backing the police line and claiming White committed suicide.
All this even though the final report found that the bullet entered through his chest and his wound did not show signs of stippling that a close-range shot is likely to produce, NBC News reports. The coroner also found abrasions on White’s face that witnesses say were not there when he was arrested.
Despite that, and the fact that he never tested White’s hands for gunpowder residue, Dr. Carl Ditch declared White’s death a suicide.
Ditch says it was possible for White to manipulate the gun to shoot himself in the chest.
His father, Reverend Victor White II, says his son wouldn’t commit suicide because he just had a new baby, a girlfriend, and a job.
“You can’t make me understand,” White said. “You can’t make me understand how my son took his left hand, when he was handcuffed behind the back, and shot himself. I don’t believe a thing they’re saying at this point.”
On March 3, White and a friend were stopped by police as suspects in a fight near a convenience store.
The police performed a “consented pat-down” and “located suspected marijuana in front pants pocket.”
Police did not report finding a gun despite patting him down twice.
The two denied that they were the people involved in the fight but police didn’t care to investigate.
White’s friend, Isaiah Lewis, says, “You’re just burning time here,’ Victor said. ‘Why can’t you go back to the store and look at the camera?’ They said they didn’t have time for that.”
Police say that officially no one was charged with the assault in question.
Officers let Lewis go while “White was then transported to the patrol center to be questioned by narcotics detectives.”
The next morning, White’s parent’s got a call from police saying “something had happened” while Victor was in custody.
When they showed up at the police station, detectives told his family that White was dead and his death is being investigated.
Police later released a statement saying, White was “taken into custody, handcuffed behind his back, and transported to the Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Office for processing. Once at the Sheriff’s Office, White became uncooperative and refused to exit the deputy’s patrol vehicle. As the deputy requested assistance from other deputies, White produced a handgun and fired one round striking himself in the back.”
The coroner also found two lacerations on his face, which Lewis says were not there when he was arrested.
White’s family isn’t holding out hope that the Louisiana State Police’s investigation contradicts the police line that Victor shot himself.
“I don’t think anything is going to be different from what they already said,” White said. “It’s difficult to see that anything else would bring back what we need. The only thing we want back is our son.”