PHILADELPHIA - Reaction has poured in from city officials, the police officers' union and other civic leaders after police officers shot and killed a man armed with a knife Monday in West Philadelphia.
It happened around 4 p.m. on the 6100 block of Locust Street. Police say officers were called to a home on the block for a man with a weapon. He has been identified as 27-year-old Walter Wallace Jr.
Video on social media shows Wallace's mother chasing after her son asking police not to shoot. You see the two officers trying to get Wallace to drop the knife. And as he walks around a car and onto Locust Street, still armed, he raises his hand. Both officers open fire, shooting at least 14 shots.
Wallace later died at the hospital.
Soon after protests spilled into the streets and continued through the night.
Here are some of the statements issued in the aftermath of this incident:
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney:
"…My prayers are with the family and friends of Walter Wallace. I have watched the video of this tragic incident and it presents difficult questions that must be answered…"
Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw:
"...I recognize that the video of the incident raises many questions. Residents have my assurance that those questions will be fully addressed by the investigation…"
District Attorney Larry Krasner:
"…We intend to go where the facts and law lead us and to do so carefully, without rushing to judgment and without bias of any kind…"
Fraternal Order of Police President John McNesby:
"…Our thoughts and prayers are with these police officers who had to use lethal force to keep themselves and the community safe…"
McNesby also had this reaction to Mayor Kenney's statement:
City Councilmember Jamie Gauthier:
"…This is a downright tragedy. Walter Wallace, Jr., a resident of my district, was shot to death by police while his mother stood steps away. I extend my deepest condolences to her, and to all of this young man's family and friends. Our whole community is mourning his loss tonight…"
And she reacted to the FOP statement this way:
Philadelphia Federation of Teachers President Jerry Jordan:
"…I am heartsick, weary, and enraged. Again and again, for far too many, being Black in America has deadly consequences. The video of Walter Wallace, Jr. being shot and killed by Philadelphia police, followed by the guttural screams of his mother running to his fallen body, is too much to bear…"
ACLU PA Executive Director Reggie Shuford:
"…State violence cannot be the answer to societal problems that deserve a fairer, more thoughtful, and more compassionate approach…"
Community Legal Services of Philadelphia:
"...In response to this completely avoidable tragedy and so many others, CLS is calling on the defunding of the police, and a meaningful investment in the resources to protect communities and avoid police violence. This includes social workers and mental health responders..."
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