A family in Fort Bend, Texas, recently turned over a video of police shooting their son, 26-year-old Michael Blair. The son was allegedly mentally ill and died as a result of the incident, according to multiple reports.
The incident occurred in November 2013 in the Blairs’ home. Michael’s parents reportedly called 911 for help because they believed their son was suicidal; ABC reported that the 26-year-old was a paranoid schizophrenic. Family apparently became concerned that he would take his own life after he locked himself in a bathroom.
The released video footage, which was caught on a surveillance camera, shows deputies initially attempting to communicate with Blair through the bathroom door. “We will kick in the door,” one of them warned.
One officer finally kicked the door in and pointed a firearm at Blair. “He’s got a knife, he’s got a knife,” an officer said. “Stay down!” another shouted at Blair.
“I do not want to shoot you,” an officer said to Blair. “Put down the knife, put down the knife.”
In the video footage, Blair appears to have been threatening to take his own life with the knife.
Officers used a taser on Blair several times. They continued to ask him to drop the knife for over three minutes. Blair refused to drop the weapon and then apparently lunged forward at the deputies with it.
An officer then shot Blair eleven times, killing him. The 26-year-old’s mother can be heard screaming and crying in the background.
Local media outlet KPRC reported that following the incident, the officer was cleared of any wrongdoing by a grand jury.
David Marcaurele, Chief Deputy of the department, told KPRC that officers are supposed to fire at threats of death. He also alleged that Blair’s family refused to release the video until after the investigation into the incident had concluded.
Now the Blair family is seeking a civil rights investigation into the shooting.
Quanell X, a New Black Panther leader in Houston, Texas, said in a statement obtained by Breitbart Texas, “The deputy’s actions were completely uncalled for. While the victim, 26-year old Michael Garrett Blair, who was already wounded by gun shots was laying on the floor, the officer stood over him and commenced shooting eleven (11) more times with eight (8) of those shots to the head in this gruesome video.”
In a press conference regarding the incident, Quanell X reportedly said, “This is cold-blooded execution. He was not a threat to anyone but himself. They could have left him in the bathroom.”
The video reveals law enforcement officers pleading with the man for minutes prior to the man seemingly deciding to attack the officers. The family has yet to explain to the public why they reportedly refused to release the home video until after the investigation was concluded. The family has also failed to explain why they had a video recording device aimed at a bathroom door–the same bathroom door their allegedly mentally ill son was threatening to commit suicide on the other side of.
Below is the raw footage (WARNING: EXTREMELY GRAPHIC)
Follow Kristin Tate on Twitter @KristinBTate.