/  10.29.2020

The Philadelphia Police Department is set to release the body camera footage from Walter Wallace Jr.’s fatal shooting to the public after days of protests and citywide unrest. In a news conference, Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw promised a transparent investigation into the fatal arrest and to release the footage after it’s shared with Wallace’s family.

Outlaw previously revealed that the two officers involved in the shooting were not armed with tasers and admitted the department needs better methods to respond to mental health crises.

“We don’t have a behavioral health unit, which is sorely needed,” she said, per the Associated Press. “There’s clearly a disconnect on our end in terms of knowing what’s out there.” 

Earlier this week, Wallace’s family’s attorney revealed that the man’s parents had called 911 to request an ambulance on Monday afternoon (Oct. 26). Instead of getting medical attention and help for Wallace, who was suffering a mental health episode, police arrived at the house.

“How do you feel to make the 911 call to get help for your son and the end result is murder?” Wallace’s cousin, Anthony Fitzhugh, said to ABC 6.

The two officers fired at least a dozen shots at the 27-year-old, allegedly armed with a knife, hitting him fatally in the chest. He died at the Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, leaving behind nine children and his pregnant wife.

Wallace’s 8-year-old son, Zamir, spoke out about his father’s death at an emotional press conference on Tuesday (Oct. 27).

“He always taught me how to be a man,” he said. “And these white racist cops got my own dad… Black lives still matter.”

The two cops involved in Wallace’s shooting have been taken off street duty pending an investigation. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney imposed a citywide curfew after days of protests, which have resulted in over 90 arrests.

“[Philadelphia has] limited resources and we have a large number of people with problems,” the mayor said. “We need to do a better job.”


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