Relatives, clergy and community leaders are demanding answers after a New Castle-area man died of injuries following a police-involved shooting.
27-year-old James Green died, Friday, in the hospital, one day after he was shot not far from his home on Parma Avenue. Initial accounts of the incident released by police conflict with those of other witnesses.
Following a prayer service Monday, members of local NAACP branches, and others, called for the release of 911 recordings, transcripts, and any recordings of police vehicle cameras that may be available.
“We are looking for justice, and we’re going to fight until we get justice,” Ricky Smith of the Wilmington NAACP said.
“It doesn’t smell good when the neighborhood accounts are drastically different from what the police are saying,” Pastor Donald Morton of the Black Clergy Consortium stated. “It doesn’t smell good when there have been five police shootings, three of which have resulted in citizens’ deaths, in a year’s time.”
Police gave this account of the Aug. 9 incident:
Green got into a dispute and fired a weapon at a neighbor. The bullet struck a parked car, after which Green drove away.
Police stopped the vehicle on Memorial Drive and noticed that Green appared to be reaching toward the center console.
Green was told repeatedly to show his hands, complied briefly, then he resumed to reach for something and accelerated the vehicle toward the officer.
The officer shot green in the upper body and the vehicle struck a nearby parked car.
A loaded gun was recovered from the console of the car during the investigation.
The explanation is being questioned by Green’s relatives and supporters of the family.
“How is it that the car is coming your way, but he’s shot in the back of the head?” Morton asked.
New Castle County Executive Paul Clark attended Monday’s rally, and said the police department and the Delaware Attorney General’s Office will conduct a thorough investigation. Clark also expressed condolences to Green’s family.
Regarding the use of a weapon by a police officer, Clark said, “There’s a policy that’s stated, there’s a policy that’s observed and checked, and that’s going to be part of the investigation.”