Dozens of officers injured in protests after U.S. marshals shoot, kill man in Memphis
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - United States marshals shot and killed a man in Memphis Wednesday night, sparking a major protest.
At least 36 Memphis police officers and Shelby County deputies were injured in the chaos. According to Memphis Police Director Mike Rallings, a crowd of people gathered after the shooting in protest, and some became unruly and began to throw rocks.
Most of those officers have minor injuries, but Rallings did say a few were seriously hurt. At least six of them were taken to the hospital, according to Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland. Rallings said there are reports of civilians being hurt and urged anyone who may have injuries to call for help.
The shooting happened near 7 p.m. on Durham Street in Frayser. Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has been called in to investigate.
According to TBI, U.S. marshals located a man with multiple warrants getting into a vehicle. When they tried to stop him, he rammed his vehicle into officers’ vehicles multiple times. TBI later identified the man as 20-year-old Brandon Webber.
TBI said Webber got out with a weapon before officers shot and killed him. TBI has not identified the officers involved.
After the shooting, the unruly crowd began to protest. MPD sent officers in riot gear to assist while civilians began throwing rocks and bricks. Eventually, officers had to use a chemical agent to disperse the crowd.
Rallings commended his officers for remaining calm amidst the chaos as well as those protesters who kept calm and did not attack officers.
“I need everyone to stay calm,” Rallings said. “If your home was vandalized or you were harmed, we need you to call police.”
Rallings encouraged people to not react before they know all the information around the shooting. He said he does not have all the facts yet and doesn’t want there to be misinformation.
Rallings said MPD supports people protesting, but not when it turns violent.
“When this happens in a neighborhood, the neighborhood is victimized,” Rallings said. He said he wants to help the neighborhood heal and get back to normal.
Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland released the following statement after the incident:
As I monitored tonight’s fatal shooting involving the US Marshal’s, I was proud of our first responders. I’m impressed by their professionalism and incredible restraint as they endured concrete rocks being thrown at them and people spitting at them. At least 24 officers and deputies were injured---6 were taken to the hospital. At least two journalists were injured. Multiple police cars were vandalized. A concrete wall outside a business was torn down. The windows were broken out at fire station 31. Let me be clear—the aggression shown towards our officers and deputies tonight was unwarranted. I want to thank the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance, the Governor and Tennessee Highway Patrol, Memphis Fire, and my staff and directors who worked overnight to serve this city.
A fire station on Overton Crossing Road was also damaged during the violence.
Three people have been arrested in connection to the protests. Officers are still at the scene as of 5 a.m.
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