attribution: Image released by Shaw Market Owner
This image was voluntarily released by the owner of the Shaw Market in South St. Louis. VonDerrit Myers is on the left in the black t-shirt. The time stamp says 7:03 PM. Myers and his friends left at 7:05pm.
Shot and killed by an off-duty St. Louis police officer on the night of Wednesday, October 8, 18-year-old VonDerrit Myers had just purchased a sandwich with his friends from the local Shaw Market. In an interview
with Matt Pearce of the Los Angeles Times
, the manager of the market, Berhe Beyet, said:
Like six minutes after I sold him a sandwich, he got shot… He wasn’t armed when he was here. He didn’t have a hoodie.
This observation from the store manager, confirmed by the still images and recently released video of Myers and two of his friends, taken just minutes before he was killed, raises a series of questions about exactly what transpired between the time Myers purchased a sandwich, not wearing a hoodie, and then being shot at 17 times by a St. Louis police officer just minutes later in possession of a gun and wearing a hoodie.
Below the fold is a video from the Shaw Market.
Just about 10 miles away from where Mike Brown was killed by Officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri, two months earlier, the police, just as they did in the aftermath of the Mike Brown killing, have revealed many factual errors in their narrative of the incident and have since changed their story of what happened, time after time after time. What follows is an account of these changes.
Less than two hours after the killing of Myers, the police, on their Twitter account, gave the following account. Please notice how they say that the “suspect,” while fleeing, turned and fired at the officer.
Later that evening, Lt. Col. Alfred Adkins of the St. Louis Police Department gave this account to Gawker
The man the officer was chasing jumped from some bushes and struggled with the officer, Adkins said. The man then pulled a gun and fired at the officer, Adkins said. The officer returned fire and fatally shot the man.
Shortly thereafter, he adds more details to his account
of the shooting:
"As [the officer] exited the car, the gentlemen took off running. He was able to follow one of them before he lost him and then found him again as the guy jumped out of some bushes across the street," Lt. Col. Alfred Adkins said. "The officer approached, they got into a struggle, they ended up into a gangway, at which time the young man pulled a weapon and shots were fired. The officer returned fire and unfortunately the young man was killed."
Notice in the account from Atkins that Myers is hiding behind some bushes on the scene and jumps out? One major problem exists with this:
Following the recognition that no bushes exist on the scene, police, the following day, completely removed any mention of Myers hiding behind them from their recounting of that evening
. But, in this statement, they still claim that Myers “turned” and began shooting at the officer:
An officer working department-approved secondary for a security company, wearing a St. Louis Police Officer’s uniform was in the 4100 block of Shaw when he attempted a pedestrian check. The male suspect fled on foot. The officer pursued the suspect. The suspect turned and fired a gun at the officer. Fearing for his safety, the officer returned fire striking the suspect, fatally wounding him. The officer was not injured. A gun was recovered from the scene. The officer is a 32-year old white male. He has been on the force for 6 years. The suspect is a black male believed to be 18-20 years old. As is department policy, the officer has been placed on administrative leave. The investigation is ongoing.
Holding a press conference about 24 hours after the shooting of Myers, Chief Sam Dotson described the night’s events as follows, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
The officer followed one of the young men, identified as Myers, into a gangway. He was running and holding his waistband in a way that caused the officer to suspect he had a gun. Myers turned and approached the officer in “an aggressive manner and the officer told Myers to surrender. Myers continued to come at the officer and the two struggled. A sweatshirt the man was wearing came off during the struggle.
When did Myers put on this sweatshirt? He is not wearing it inside the store and does not put it on when he leaves the store and begins to walk away on foot. Also, if you watch the video, you can clearly see that Myers is sagging his jeans. It is common, with this style, to have to hold jeans up when running and is far from being indicative that someone possesses a firearm.
Today, just about 72 hours after the shooting of Myers, a spokesperson for the police, in addition to completely removing the bush from their narrative, now claims that Myers “fell” and began shooting at the officer from the ground. This is an ENORMOUS shift in the story that the police have told for the previous three days.
Furthermore, it is worth noting that the spokesperson for the St. Louis police union, Jeff Roorda, already chiming in on this case
, was himself fired as a police officer for falsifying reports
and has admitted that he is behind the fundraiser for Darren Wilson.