A protester raises his hands in the air in the face of police on October 27, 2020 in Philadelphia.
Jessica Griffin / AP / SIPA
The city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania was the scene of protests and clashes with police, with dozens of officers injured, on the night of Monday to Tuesday after the death of a black man killed by US forces. order.
The outbreak of violence was sparked by the death of a 27-year-old man identified as Walter Wallace Jr. on Monday afternoon in the West Philadelphia neighborhood, shot several times by two police officers.
The man, who was mentally ill, according to his family, was brandishing a knife but was about three meters from the officers, as his mother tried to calm him down, according to videos shared on social media (like this one, be careful, the images are shocking).
No attempt at de-escalation
Police were dispatched to the scene after a call made mention of a man with a knife.
Walter Wallace Jr. refused to drop his gun despite officers' orders, according to Eric Gripp, spokesman for the Philadelphia Police Department.
According to his father, interviewed by the
, the victim suffered from psychological problems and was under treatment.
“Why didn't they use a Taser (electric pulse gun)?
", Lamented Walter Wallace Sr." His mother was trying to calm the situation, "he added.
A few hours after the incident, some 300 demonstrators gathered in the streets to protest against police violence and racism, leading to confrontations with the police.
Thirty police officers were injured, including several who were hospitalized, Philadelphia police told AFP.
The White House ready to intervene
Most of their injuries came from projectiles, including bricks, thrown by protesters and a policewoman was hit by a vehicle, according to a police spokesperson.
Businesses were vandalized, a police car set on fire and many individuals were arrested, according to the authorities.
A wave of anti-racist protest, sometimes carrying violence, crosses the country since the filmed death of George Floyd, a black forty-something killed by a white policeman at the end of May.
“I have seen the video of this tragic incident and it raises difficult questions that need to be answered,” said Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney.
He announced that an investigation was going to be opened.
“We are monitoring the situation closely.
We stand ready to deploy federal resources if needed.
President Trump will not tolerate violence being directed against American law enforcement agencies, ”said Alyssa Farah, director of communications for the White House.
Black Lives Matter