A former Arizona police officer has been acquitted of murder after he shot and killed an unarmed man outside his hotel room.
Philip Mitchell Brailsford, 27, shot Daniel Shaver in 2016 when he was responding to call that someone there was pointing a gun out of a window.
The Daily Wire’s Matt Walsh pointed out the absurdity of what followed when the officers arrived. Shaver came out of the room stumbling, he’s told to get on the ground and immediately does so. Shaver did everything Brailsford asked of him, but the requests were odd. Walsh lays out the entire, verbatim transcript of what Brailsford told Shaver to do:
“lie on the ground,” “put both hands on top of your head and interlace your fingers,” “take your feet and cross your left foot over your right foot,” “keep your feet crossed,” “put both hands flat in front of you” (while they’re on his head and interlaced?), “push yourself to a kneeling position” (have you ever tried to push yourself up while your arms are extended all the way in front of you?), “put both hands in the air,” “crawl towards me” (with his hands in the air?), “stop,” “crawl,” “keep your legs crossed” (while crawling?), “put your hands in the air,” “keep your legs crossed,” “crawl” (so he’s supposed to crawl again with his hands in the air and his legs crossed). In the midst of this flurry of hysterical, arbitrary commands, as Brailsford continually reminds Shaver that he’ll die if he “makes a mistake,” Shaver cries and begs for his life.
This man attempted to comply and Brailsford continued to wield his power before shooting Shaver as he crawled toward the officers, as Shaver’s pants began to slip, he grabbed for them and Brailsford unloaded his weapon.
The video was released to the public after the trial concluded. After watching the video, it’s difficult to see how Brailsford escaped sentence. Even in an era when many Americans have become accustomed to viewing disturbing killings at the hand of police officers, this one stands out. A horrific video released on Thursday shows an Arizona cop killing an unarmed man who begged for his life in a hotel hallway in 2016. (Warning: the clip below is extremely disturbing.)
The Brutal Police Execution of Daniel Shaver
Sadly I’ve studied 100s of videos of American police executing non-violent, unarmed people. This is one of the worst I’ve ever witnessed.
This happened in January of 2016, but the judge just released the video.
A grave injustice. pic.twitter.com/O3UjLb3mZJ
— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) December 8, 2017
While no gun was found on Mr Shaver’s body, two pellet rifles related to his pest-control job were later found in his room. Shaver was murdered and it was captured on video and none of it adds up as to why he was acquitted and yet the media silence does add up: Shaver was white.
During his trial testimony, Mr Brailsford described the stress that he faced in responding to the call and his split-second decision to shoot Mr Shaver.He is one of the few police officers in the US to be charged with murder for shooting someone while on duty.
Meanwhile, police continue to shoot and kill American civilians by the thousands each year.
As The Atlantic’s Conor Friedersdorf notes, “The total number of police killings in England since 1990 is about the same as the number of people killed by Arizona police last year alone.”