Video shows Terence Crutcher had hands up before police shooting

The Tulsa Police Department released footage of an officer-involved shooting that killed an unarmed black man on Friday.

A department spokesperson said Terence Crutcher, 40, refused to comply with orders to put his hands in the air, but the video shows his hands were raised before he was shot and killed.

>> Read more trending stories  

None of the officers had body cameras, but dashcam footage shows Officer Betty Shelby with her gun drawn on Crutcher. He walks to his car with his arms raised before being shot once.

Crutcher's family said his SUV stalled in the middle of the road on Friday as he was heading home from class at a local community college.

Police said Crutcher's vehicle was blocking traffic, that he did not obey commands and that he approached the officers, KOKI-TV reported. 

According to KOKI-TV, Officer Tyler Turnbough deployed a Taser, and Shelby fired her gun at Crutcher. He was struck and killed.

TPD also confirmed one of the officers in the helicopter that responded to the shooting was Shelby's husband.

Tulsa Police Chief Chuck Jordan said, "The video is very disturbing. It’s very difficult to watch." He added Crutcher did not have a weapon on his person or in his car.

The Department of Justice launched a civil rights investigation into the shooting. Crutcher's sister said she hopes the officer who pulled the trigger stands trial.

"We're demanding, today, immediately, that charges are pressed against this officer that was incompetent that took my brother's life," Tiffany Crutcher said.

About a dozen people gathered outside the Tulsa courthouse to protest the shooting. Local pastor Mareo Johnson called for any additional protests to remain peaceful.

Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler said his office will review police reports and evidence in the shooting. 

"Certainly, the death of Mr. Crutcher is a tragic event and my sympathies are with his family during this difficult time," Kunzweiler said. "It is important that the integrity of this on-going investigation be maintained, and it would be improper for me or any other law enforcement official to comment upon the specifics of the case as it could result in subsequent criminal charges."

Kunzweiler emphasized the importance of protecting the integrity of the investigative process while balancing the need for transparency.

"In this country we all enjoy the presumption of innocence regardless of any accusation leveled," he said. "Tulsa County citizens have long demonstrated a high regard for the rule of law and respect for the legal process. I will continue to do the job I am sworn to do, and I ask our citizens to stand firm in their adherence to the rule of law. My request is that we pray for wisdom and guidance as our community addresses this sad event."

Tulsa police released several video and audio clips from the deadly shooting. The video is graphic, they are available at KOKI-TV.

Read more at KOKI-TV.

Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.

Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.

KOKI-TV contributed to this story.