Two officers fired 24 shots, killing a handcuffed man in a Walmart parking lot. In the months that followed that November incident, police in Chester have insisted they were justified in shooting 28-year-old Ariane McCree. McCree, though handcuffed, had pointed — but never fired — a pistol at officers as he fled arrest for shoplifting a $46 door handle, police said.
Weeks of protests ignited by the Minnesota police killing of George Floyd drew renewed scrutiny to the case this month. Then, police released a grainy body camera video of the shooting, which McCree’s family insists raises more questions than it answers.
Since then, Chester Mayor Wanda Stringfellow, a cousin of McCree’s, has called for two officers involved to be fired. The Chester City Council is expected to consider that matter Monday.
And after declining to press charges against the two officers in March, South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson has requested federal prosecutors also review the case. Chester Police Chief Eric Williams has defended his officers, who are both white. McCree was black.
“When someone is pointing a firearm at you and walking toward you, I don’t know of a whole lot of de-escalation that you can insert in that situation, but to respond,” Williams said. But what preceded the shooting, and other key moments left out of body camera footage, have largely gone unaddressed. (Video contains images that some may find disturbing.)… The Post and Courier