A 20-year-old man was shot and killed by Salt Lake City Police August 11, for failing to comply with orders – and the department still refuses to release body cam footage of the incident.
Dillon Taylor was reportedly wearing headphones and likely couldn’t hear the officers, his brother said.
Dillion, his brother, and cousin were at a 7-Eleven in South Salt Lake City when cops began searching the area for a suspect who was allegedly “waving a gun.”
When the three young men exited the convenience store they were surrounded by officers and ordered to show their hands. Two of the men stopped and complied. Dillon Taylor, who was listening to music, seemingly did not hear the officers and kept walking until he was shot and killed.
Dillion’s brother Jerrail and cousin Adam Thayne were both taken into custody and questioned. Neither were charged in connection with the original call police received. Both young men affirm Dillion was unarmed and simply went to pull his pants up when police opened fire.
“They say they are here to ‘protect and serve,’ its more like ‘shoot and kill’ because he wasn’t a threat,” brother of the deceased, Jerrail Taylor, said. “He was shot twice right in front of me. There were no guns ever found and there never will be.”
“They were obviously upset. Their friend had been shot and kept screaming for him to wake up, and he never did. He died in the parking lot, they were saying he did not have a gun, and they were very upset because of that,” a witness said.
Officials say Dillion had warrants at the time of the incident, which had been processed a week earlier by a judge for violating his probation. Sgt. Darin Sweeten stated, however, that police unlikely knew prior to the shooting.
Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank said Tuesday that the police officer who shot and killed Dillon Taylor captured the incident on his body camera.
Burbank says the video, along with the name of the officer, is being withheld until the “appropriate” time. He said he didn’t know if that would be days, weeks or months.
“It would be wholly inappropriate to take the most vital piece of evidence that we have and put it out to the public prior to the officer having some due process,” he told reporters.
The officer’s body camera recorded the entire incident, including the point when the officer shoots Taylor, Burbank said.
Burbank says he has watched the video, but would not comment on whether he thought the shooting was justified. He also refused to comment on whether Dillion was armed or not.
Burbank, who has adamantly refuted comparisons to the officer involved shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, claims five different investigations have been launched into the incident.
The three officers involved in the shooting have been put on paid administrative leave.
Police State Daily requests for comment were denied. Protests were held in Salt Lake City, Wednesday, to demand justice for both Dillion Taylor and Michael Brown.
Update: Bodycam footage released:
Update: A Salt Lake grand jury cleared Officer Bron Cruz of any wrong doing in Dillion’s shooting earlier this week.
Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill said in a statement this week that the officer was clearly justified in the shooting, despite the fact that the Taylor was unarmed.
Officials maintain the officer believed Taylor had a weapon and intended to use it.