A Minnesota police officer fatally shot 32-year-old Philando Castile last night, apparently as he reached for his driver’s license during a traffic stop. Castile’s girlfriend began recording the encounter on Facebook live after Castile was shot. She said they had been pulled over for a broken tail light, and that Castile told officers he had a licensed firearm in the car and was reaching for identification.
Warning: The following video contains graphic content.
“He was trying to get his license and ID out his pocket,” she says in the video, while showing Castile, covered in blood, in the driver’s seat.
“I told him not to reach for it!” the officer can be heard yelling in the background.
“You told him to get his ID, sir,” Castile’s girlfriend says.
The St. Anthony’s Police Department said that the officer has been placed on paid leave while the shooting is investigated. Castile’s death comes just days after the police shooting of Alton Sterling, a graphic video of which went viral. The Department of Justice has already said they will investigate Sterling’s death.
Castile’s mother, Valerie Castile, told CNN that she always told her son to “comply, comply, comply” when stopped by police. She said she believes her son was just “black in the wrong place.”
Family members told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that Castile was a cafeteria worker at the J.J. Hill Montessori school.
People protested the killing Wednesday night outside the Gov. Mark Dayton’s house in St. Paul, the Star-Tribune reported, chanting, “No Justice, no peace.”
Of the officer who shot Castile, Castile’s uncle Clarence told CNN, “He’s not an officer. He’s just a man. An officer is supposed to protect and serve. That was a man who did that. That man is a destroyer and he came into our lives and done something and took something from us.”