Residents of a low-income neighborhood in Durham (NC) are irate this morning after three officers attempting to arrest a convicted felon shot him after the criminal pulled a stolen gun on them.
A man wanted on several outstanding warrants was killed Wednesday afternoon in a shooting involving three Durham police officers, authorities said.
The shooting occurred in the 2500 block of Glenbrook Drive at about 2:20 p.m. as the members of the Selective Enforcement Team were trying to serve an order for arrest, Police Chief C.J. Davis said. Durham police started using police body cameras in December, but the officers involved in Wednesday’s shootings were not wearing body cameras.
Police haven’t released the man’s name, but a relative at the scene of the shooting identified him as 24-year-old Kenneth Lee Bailey Jr.
Bailey was charged last summer with robbery with a dangerous weapon, felony conspiracy and possession of a firearm by a felon, and court records show an order for his arrest on the first two charges was issued Wednesday. Davis said the man had violated his pre-trial release conditions.
The man ran from police, and during a foot chase, he pulled a gun from his waistband and pointed it at the officers, who then fired at him, Davis said.
Witnesses said they heard several shots fired and said a school bus was pulling into the neighborhood off East Club Boulevard at the time of the shooting.
Davis said a gun, which had been reported stolen in December, was found next to the man’s body.
Bailey was wanted on a warrant for violating the terms of his 2016 release on charges of robbery with a dangerous weapon and felony conspiracy. He was also facing indictment for being a felon in possession of a weapon, and had a history involving arrests for drugs and possessing stolen property.
The scene quickly became tense as people in the community quickly came to blame the police for the shooting, and not the actions of the violent and illegally armed felon.
Community members said the man killed Wednesday went by “Simba.”
“He was friends with my grandson. … My grandson is 19 years old and Simba was 24,” said Chris Blalock. “Police need to stop killing our young black men!”
Surrounded by supporters, the dead man’s father approached the police tape. He and his supporters demanded he be allowed to see his son’s body.
“I explained to him that the area is still an open crime scene with evidential value. It is imperative that the area is kept in pristine condition,” Durham Deputy Chief Anthony Marsh said afterward.
“Also, he doesn’t want to see his son lying there, that way,” Marsh said.
Davis arrived at the shooting scene around 3:20 p.m. and spoke with investigators before leaving around 4 p.m.
Onlookers shouted “They executed him!” and “You didn’t need to shoot him multiple times!” at the chief and her officers.
A witness claims that he saw and recorded part of the incident.
“I was sitting in my chair, I heard one small pop, I heard a large bang,” said William Smith, who lives next to the home where the suspect ran from and across the street where the suspect was killed.
When he heard the noise, he went outside, took out his cell phone and hit record, capturing the aftermath. He said it seemed as though Bailey was complying with police when he fell to the ground, but then realized he may have just been falling after being shot.
“They cuffed him, they turned him over and they immediately started doing CPR,” Smith said.
The officers on the warrant team were not wearing body cameras, as they are still being rolled out.
The State Bureau Of Investigation will take part in the investigation into the incident, and a preliminary report is expected next Wednesday.