20-year-old Dillon Taylor was shot and killed by Salt Lake City Police August 11, for failing to comply with orders. The department initially refused to release body cam footage of the incident, then released only a spinet showing everything leading up to the killing.
Now, a full version of that disturbing and graphic footage shows an unarmed Taylor being shot before an officer handcuffs his lifeless body as it bleeds out on the pavement.
Taylor, his brother, and cousin were at a 7-Eleven in South Salt Lake City when cops began searching the area for a suspect who was allegedly “waving a gun.”
When the three young men exited the convenience store they were surrounded by officers and ordered to show their hands. Two of the men stopped and complied. Taylor, who was listening to music, seemingly did not hear the officers and kept walking until he was shot and killed, his brother had said at the time.
The footage shows Taylor address officers, with head phones in, and decline to comply with their commands.
Taylor’s brother Jerrail and cousin Adam Thayne were both taken into custody and questioned. Neither were charged in connection with the original call police received. Both young men affirmed Dillion was unarmed and simply went to pull his pants up when police opened fire.
“They say they are here to ‘protect and serve,’ its more like ‘shoot and kill’ because he wasn’t a threat,” brother of the deceased, Jerrail Taylor, said at the time. “He was shot twice right in front of me. There were no guns ever found and there never will be.”
“They were obviously upset. Their friend had been shot and kept screaming for him to wake up, and he never did. He died in the parking lot, they were saying he did not have a gun, and they were very upset because of that,” a witness said.
Officials said Dillion had warrants at the time of the incident, which had been processed a week earlier by a judge for violating his probation. Sgt. Darin Sweeten stated, however, that police unlikely knew prior to the shooting.
In the days following the shooting, Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank said releasing the body-cam footage “would be wholly inappropriate… prior to the officer having some due process.”
A short clip showing the events prior to the shooting was released in September, but now the full version of the footage has been released to the public.
Watch the raw footage (warning graphic):
Officer Bron Cruz had claimed he feared Taylor was reaching for a gun in his waistband and feared for his life. He was cleared of any wrongdoing in late September.
Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill said that Cruz was clearly justified in the shooting, despite the fact that the Taylor was unarmed.
Protests, which had been held in Taylor’s honor last year, are expected to resume.