Questions rise after 7th deadly police shooting - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Questions rise after 7th deadly police shooting

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(WMC-TV) - Memphis Police are investigating Memphis' seventh deadly shooting by officers since January. It happened Tuesday night at a gas station on Jackson Avenue near Watkins Street.

Officers said they tried pulling over a pink sedan because they considered the car suspicious. According to police, the driver, hit the gas pedal and struck both officers.

That is when the officers fired shots, killing the driver.

Witnesses said the car was stationary, until the officers started shooting.

"Five or six shots going off," said witness Keishia Brown.

Brown said she was in the BP gas station near the crime scene just before 7 p.m. Tuesday, when she saw an officer jump on a parked pink sedan.

"He jumped over on top of the car like a movie and just started shooting at the man in front of everybody," she said.

Police Director Toney Armstrong said the suspect tried to run over two of his officers and then they shot him.

"In his efforts to get away, he struck two officers. I've seen the video. One of the officers was actually on the hood of the vehicle," said Armstrong.

He said the officers approached the suspect pumping gas because he had tags that did not match his car. Also, Armstrong said the officers had tried to stop him days earlier, but he fled then too.

"The police, he jumped over the car just to shoot the man, which it really didn't take all that just to shoot the man," said Brown.

Armstrong said people are getting more brazen, not just attacking civilians.

"Now, it's escalated to where people are committing acts against police officers," said Armstrong.

Giovanni Williams said her brother, Anjustine Hunter, unjustly died at the hands of two Memphis Police officers.

"I need to talk to Toney Armstrong ASAP. A.S.A.P. He needs to be calling me because that's not right," she said. "My only brother. He takes care of me.

Hunter died in his sister's pink Chevy. She admits the tags were expired and said Hunter was getting gas to get her car ready for inspection.

"He didn't have a weapon on him," said Williams. "They're constantly shooting folks and getting away with it, but they're not going to get away with this one."

Armstrong said a vehicle can be used as a weapon, just as well as a firearm or blade.

Many witnesses said the pink Chevy was stationary and then rolled after Hunter was shot.

"I swear I'm not letting them cover it up," said the suspect's sister Danielle White.

Armstrong says 11 officers have been shot in two years, two killed.

"It's troubling to know there are that many individuals that would brazenly attack a police officer," he said.

Where family said the deadly force was unwarranted, Armstrong assures pepper spray would not have stopped a two-ton car.

"All of our cases are presented to the Attorney General's office for a final review," he said.

The officers suffered minor injuries and are on administrative leave pending the investigation. Police said they found three grams of heroin in the suspect's car.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

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