The "reason" for the homicide by cop has yet to be stated, but it would appear that the well trained officer may have been reaching for his "less lethal" taser, but forgot which holster it was in. There could be little other explanation. The good news, if there can be any, after this young, father of four was murdered by agents of the state, is that there were several video cameras and cell phones to witness the murder. Perhaps the San Francisco District Attorney will be unable to shield the grand jury from the facts of the homicide, as is usually the case. Perhaps, just this once, the cops will be made to answer for this unanswerable crime. Maybe not.
Karina Vargas, who also provided a video to local tv news, said the men had been pulled from the train car in front of hers.
Burris said Tuesday that the young men had been celebrating the new year at a popular waterfront tourist spot, The Embarcadero. They were heading home when police pulled them from the train car.
Some of the young men were handcuffed, but not 22-year-old Oscar Grant. The video from the anonymous passenger shows Grant seated on the floor with his back against the wall.
Grant holds up his hands, appearing to plead with police. Burris (the victim's family attorney) said Tuesday that Grant was asking police not to use a Taser.
"He said to them, 'Don't Tase me; I have a 4-year-old daughter,' " Burris said.
The interaction on the video is not audible.
Seconds later, police put Grant face-down on the ground. Grant appears to struggle.
One of the officers kneels on Grant as another officer stands up, tugs at his gun, unholsters it and fires a shot into Grant's back.
Burris said the bullet went through Grant's back and then ricocheted off the floor and through his lungs.
Grant, who has a 4-year-old daughter, died seven hours later.
"I couldn't believe it. We was already following directions and everything, and they shot him," Fernando Anicete, one of the young men with Grant, told A local t.v. reporter.
Burris has spoken to witnesses who claim that Grant was trying to resolve the situation.