A police officer in Arkansas is on the hood of a moving car that had been reported stolen when he fires 15 times into the vehicle’s windshield, killing the driver, stunning dashcam video shows.
The Little Rock Police Department released footage of the Feb. 22 incident on Thursday, which Mayor Frank Scott said was part of an effort to be “accountable, clear and transparent” in a statement posted to Twitter.
Scott said the department compiled dashcam footage, video from nearby businesses’ security cameras, and radio traffic to create a nearly 25-minute video showing the confrontation between Officer Charles Starks and 30-year-old Bradley Blackshire.
Starks was responding to a call after a detective confirmed that Blackshire was driving a car that was reported stolen.
In the video released by police, Starks can be seen walking up to Blackshire’s car with a gun drawn and instructing him to get out of the car multiple times. The 30-year-old refuses, asking “What did I do?” and “What are you going to shoot me for?” before slowing accelerating and hitting the officer.
Starks then fires into the windshield multiple times before Berkshire stops and the officer leans on the hood. Berkshire then continues to drive the car with Starks on the hood, leading the police officer to shoot at the vehicle’s windshield several more times.
Starks stops shooting and gets off the car after a moment — but then Little Rock officer Michael Simpson arrives and crashes into Blackshire’s vehicle.
Another angle of the incident shows Blackshire’s car rolling into a fence as officers yell “get your f____ hands up!” and “don’t f____ move!”
After the car stops, Starks tells a female passenger to get on the ground. He handcuffs her, and she says Blackshire had just picked her up and that he had a gun. The officers radioed for an ambulance, but Blackshire died at the scene.
Police said Starks sustained an unspecified injury to his right leg and was released from the hospital the same day. The other officer and female passenger in the vehicle were not injured.
Starks turned in his badge and gun when the department relieved him of duty in the days after the shooting, according to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He is still being paid, pending the investigation into the shooting. Disciplinary records reviewed by the paper showed Starks has been reprimanded 10 times since 2015, leading to nearly a month’s worth of suspensions.
Little Rock Interim Chief of Police Wayne Bewley said in the video that an initial criminal investigation has been completed and the file has been handed to prosecutors to determine if charges will be filed. The administrative investigation is ongoing to determine if the officer’s actions were in compliance with department policy.
The Little Rock Fraternal Order of Police has said that Starks deserves due process and that the community should reserve judgment until the investigation concludes. In a statement after the shooting, the union said the shooting could have been avoided if Blackshire complied with Stark’s commands and showed him his hands.
The family of the 30-year-old watched the video before it was released to the public, FOX16 reported.
In a statement released through an attorney, the family said: “The video confirms our assessment that Charles Starks employed an unreasonable and excessive amount of force.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.