Chaminade students react to recent police shootings on the mainland

Just months after officer Darren Wilson shot an unarmed African-american teenager, Michael Brown, a similar situation struck again.

Officer Michael T. Slager was charged with murder of Walter Scott, a 50-year-old African-American, on April 4 in North Charleston, S.C. A civilian’s phone footage provided evidence in the case and showed the white officer shooting the unarmed black male as he ran away.

Many students at Chaminade University were outraged by the situation, especially given the rising racial tensions due to the Michael Brown incident.

“The shooting of Walter Scott was yet again another wrongdoing by the people paid by the citizens to protect. I look at every case the same. I take the race of the person out of the equation. Had it been a white on white or black on black my stance would not have changed,” said Darnell Fenderson, a student at Chaminade University.

This event gained large media attention due to the viral video that depicted a white officer shooting eight times at an unarmed black male who was seemingly running away. After the man was shot several times, he fell to his stomach and did not move. The police officer handcuffed Scott, who was eventually pronounced dead. The New York Times and Scott’s lawyers were provided the footage from a bystander.

“This case is about color though, the color is blue. A police officer lied about the interaction he had with the deceased,” said Fenderson. “The video, which surfaced after the officers statement said differently. Walter Scott was clearly running away from the officer when he was shot in the back multiple times.”

Social media has made it clear by the trends, sharing of links, and thoughts shared through Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. Now it’s a debate about if police officers are using too much force, especially in many cases with unarmed African-American males.

“Watching the video, I can’t necessarily judge the severity of what happened, but there is no excuse for the death of a man and to be shot that many times when he was just running away unarmed,” said Kierra Wilkins, a sophomore biology major at Chaminade.

One of the first videos that CNN released to the public, shows what happened leading up to the altercation. The video is from the dashboard of the cop’s car when Scott is first pulled over for a busted taillight. It shows Scott and the police officer conversing, and then later on, Scott decides to flee the scene and runs out of his car.

“Cops are humans like the rest of us. And finally I wonder how many cases like this are out there with no video to give the victim justice. Makes a person wonder, are the boys in blue the real terrorist?” said Fenderson.

The New York Times said that on wednesday a State Senate subcommittee passed a bill requiring all law enforcements officers in the state to wear body cameras.

The video proceeds to show something happen with the Taser and then Scott runs away unarmed and was shot by Slager eight times. Slager was charged with murder.

“I felt that the officer should be held responsible for his unlawfully shooting. He should’ve used another weapon to detain the suspect. There are too many officers killing civilians,” said DeVon Boyd, 20-year-old accounting major at Chaminade.

Just months after the unarmed shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. In New York, a white officer, Daniel Pantaleo, choked Eric Garner after trying to put him in custody on suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes.

There has been a great number of cases involving a white police officer using too much force with an unarmed black males.

On Saturday, many gathered at the Fielding Home For Funerals in Charleston, S.C., to mourn the death of Scott.