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La. prosecutors calls death of Alton Sterling ‘state authorized killing’

July 7, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
La. prosecutors calls death of Alton Sterling ‘state authorized killing’

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A Louisiana prosecutor told a local CBS affiliate that two white officers involved in the shooting death of a black man in Baton Rouge, La., may have acted within the law.

Baton Rouge police officials have insisted that 37-year-old Alton Sterling was armed at the time of Tuesday’s confrontation with officers Blane Salamoni and Howie Lake.

However, footage of the shooting captured by two cell phones failed to show Sterling armed with a weapon.

“This is potentially a state-authorized killing, It gives law enforcement officers the authority and mandates them to kill when in defense of themselves or others,” East Baton Rouge District Attorney Hillar Moore told CBS.

The comments made by Moore follows angry protests by the community that erupted on Wednesday night over Sterling’s death.

In a statement, Justice Dept. officials announced the launch of a civil rights inquiry into the Sterling’s slaying.

The two uniformed officers responded to a disturbance call about an armed black male in a red shirt selling music CDs outside Triple S Food Mart in Baton Rouge.

A video posted on social media shows the officers tackling Sterling onto the payment. A second, more graphic video, posted by the Daily Beast late Wednesday afternoon, appearing to be video recorded from right over the shoulder of one of the cops shows Sterling pinned by the two officers. One of them then pulls his gun, and a voice can be heard screaming, “He’s got a gun!” before gunfire rings out.

The camera jerks away before panning back to a mortally injured Sterling bleeding from a gunshot wound to his chest. Both officers have been placed on leave pending the investigation.

City and state officials said the US Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division along with the FBI and U.S. Attorney’s Office would lead the investigation into Sterling’s death.

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