• Fatal SPD shooting protest blocks Seattle traffic

    Updated:

    SEATTLE - Protesters angry in the police shooting that killed Che Taylor – took to the streets of downtown Seattle demanding answers in his death.

    The demonstration started outside the police headquarters, blocking an intersection at 5th Avenue and Cherry Street.

    Seattle police bicycle officers rode alongside the group.

    Protesters marched to Westlake Center, creating delays on the express lanes and more traffic blockages.

    At least one demonstrator said not all officers are looking for violence, but some are, and that needs to change.

    "I want every police officer to go home safely. But do we? Do we deserve to go home safely? Yeah!"

    Police dash camera video captured the shooting of Marvin Hunter, who also went by the name Che Taylor, in North Seattle on Sunday afternoon.

    Police said officers fired after Hunter reached for a handgun. Because he was a felon, he was prohibited from possessing a gun.

    He was convicted of rape, assault and robbery, but the Seattle NAACP has joined family members who say Taylor obeyed police.

    “What you see, is the officer giving demands – ‘raise your hand, get down,’ and he did exactly as the officer commanded,” Seattle NAACP President Gerald Hankerson said at a Tuesday news conference.

    To read what family members said about Taylor's death, click here.

    Family attorneys want more evidence to go public and believe that police are withholding more videos of the shooting.

    Hankerson described the shooting as an “execution” and “cold-blooded murder.” 

    At scene on Sunday, police say they identified Hunter as a felon when they were working an undercover drug operation. He was in prison for 22 years for robbery, rape, illegal possession of a firearm, assault and drug possession and delivery.

    Hunter was taken to Harborview Medical Center, where he died.
    Hunter was taken to Harborview Medical Center, where he died.
    © 2019 Cox Media Group.

    On Sunday, he was carrying approximately 6 ounces of suspected crack cocaine and black tar heroin, investigators said.

    Hankerson contends officers may have planted gun and drug evidence, and demands the release of extended footage from dash cam footage from the scene.

    The Seattle Police Department says the officers involved in the shooting will be placed on paid administrative leave during the investigation, per department policy.

    Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole said this investigation, including the dash cam video, is being overseen by the Department of Justice.

    “Officers have to make split-second decisions,” O’Toole said in a news briefing on Monday. “They are trained to aim toward center mass and they did from what I understand what they were trained to do, but again, this is an ongoing investigation.”

    On Tuesday night, The Associated Press identified the two officers who fired their weapons were identified Tuesday as Michael Spaulding and Scott Miller. Both were hired in 2008 and are now on paid leave.

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