OAKLAND (KPIX 5) – Family, friends and activists held a vigil Friday night for a man who was fatally shot by Oakland Police officers on Wednesday. They are disputing police findings and accounts from witnesses that he was pointing a gun at officers.
The crowd gathered at 27th Street and Martin Luther King, Jr. Way Friday evening for the vigil.READ MORE: Families Anxiously Await COVID Vaccinations For Toddlers
Police have said the shooting occurred Wednesday shortly after 2:30 p.m. when a robbery suspect crashed his car during a police pursuit and allegedly tried to carjack another vehicle and then advance on officers with a gun.
Family and friends at the event identified the man killed as Nathaniel Wilks. As the vigil, Wilks’ friends and family said they have heard conflicting stories from other witnesses.
“People that we personally know that were there said that he was not armed, he was not confrontational, and he was running but he was slowing down, trying to surrender saying ‘Ok, Ok, Ok,’ with his hands up. So something is not matching up,” said Jasmine Marshall, a family friend.
Protesters, neighbors and family members went to the spot where the shooting happened, and had a series of demands.READ MORE: Rock Superstar Meat Loaf Dies At 74; Dark-Hearted Anthems Loved By Millions
“We want the chest cam video. We want to get a second autopsy,” Marshall said.
A partial autopsy report already exists. Lt. Chris Bolton of the Oakland Police tweeted part of the report Thursday.
Witnesses said that Wilks would not drop his gun and it seemed police had no choice but to shoot.
“He wouldn’t drop the gun so…they hit him about six or seven times,” eyewitness Canesha Griffin said Wednesday.
Black Lives Matter activists told KPIX 5 that they’re not calling Wilks a saint. They acknowledge that he was running from police and he may have been driving a car that had been linked to a robbery.
“That still doesn’t mean you get to shoot him in the back,” said Cat Brooks of the Anti-Police Terror Project. “You chase him until you catch him and you find a way to bring him into custody.”MORE NEWS: Vigil Set for Saturday in Santa Rosa to Bring Attention to Search for Missing Mom
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