New Bodycam Footage Shows 20-Year-Old Firing At Police Before He Was Fatally Shot

Detroit police release body and dash-camera footage in the fatal officer-involved shooting of 20-year-old Hakeem Littleton Friday showing the deceased firing at police first before officers fatally shot him.

The shooting death sparked protests throughout the city, but Police Chief James Craig said the video disputes every narrative that Littleton was unarmed.
Speaking of the officer who was struck in the shootout, the Detroit police chief said it was "simply a miracle he wasn’t struck in the head.”

Craig said at a news conference following the shooting that Littleton was no more than 3 feet away from officers when he suddenly pulled a 0.25 caliber semi-automatic pistol out of his pocket and began shooting at officers as they faced each other.
“It’s simply a miracle he wasn’t struck in the head,” Craig said about the officer, who was unharmed.

Officers were investigating a shooting that occurred at a block party during July Fourth weekend and arrested a separate man, Darnell Sylvester, who had an outstanding warrant against him for drug distribution.

Police were not investigating Littleton and were not planning on arresting him for anything but Craig said Littleton, who was standing next to Sylvester during the arrest, said "you are not going to take my man, in other words, take him into custody," before he began firing at police.

Littleton fired two shots before three officers returned fire with four shots. Littleton continued shooting even as he fell to the ground, firing two more shots that missed police.
"There were eight shots fired in five seconds. Four fired by three officers, one officer fired two shots, and then four shots fired by the suspect," Craig said.
"As Littleton raised the gun in his left hand he was aiming at the head of the officer," Craig added.
Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan bolstered the police's account of the events and commended the chief for releasing the video swiftly, as protesters called to "Defund the police" in the city.
"The video is clear that the officer was suddenly and unexpectedly fired upon," Duggan said on Twitter.
"Public confidence requires citizens to be able to judge for themselves the actions of our officers. I commend Chief Craig for moving so quickly to release the video publicly," he added.
The incident ratcheted up already heightened tensions across the country as protesters decried police brutality and racial injustice stemming from the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May.

Protesters outraged by Littleton's death got "very violent," Craig said, throwing bottles, rocks and even a water cooler at officers from the Detroit Police Department's 12th precinct. Officers deployed tear gas to break up the crowd and made several arrested.
"This officer is a hero even though he did not have his gun out. He put his own life in jeopardy when he was being fired upon," Craig said of the shooting incident.
All of the officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave pending an internal investigation of the case.

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