St. Louis officials have identified the 25-year-old man shot dead yesterday in an officer-involved shooting that happened only a few miles from where Michael Brown was killed by police earlier this month.
Authorities said Kajieme Powell stole donuts and energy drinks from a store yesterday afternoon, which prompted the owner to call police, according to KSDK. When two officers arrived shortly before 1 p.m., they said they observed Powell acting erratically. He refused to put down a knife when commanded to do so, police said.
Witnesses said the suspect yelled, "Shoot me now. Kill me now," before approaching officers. Some people who saw the shooting described it as "suicide by cop," according to USA Today.
In a statement delivered before a crowd near the scene of the shooting, St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson said that both officers opened fire on Powell after the suspect came within three or four feet of police while holding the knife in an "overhand grip."
UPDATE: Aug. 21 -- St. Louis police released graphic video of the shooting Wednesday that appears to undermine key elements of the official statement.
Police identified Powell Tuesday night, as about 150 people gathered near the scene of the shooting. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a peaceful protest at the store disbanded by 1 a.m., Wednesday morning.
The newspaper reports:
At its height, the crowd around the market numbered about 150. Some of them at times shouted "Hands up! Shoot back!" as police officers stood nearby.
Earlier, St. Louis aldermen Antonio French and Chris Carter urged people at the scene to remain calm.
"Let's be patient," French said in raw video that emerged yesterday afternoon. "The last thing we need is violence in our neighborhood. No silliness over here. We're going to find out what happened. You've got people that got your back over here. You aren't alone like they are in Ferguson."
Tuesday's shooting happened about three and a half miles from where Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager, was shot and killed by police on Aug. 9.
BEFORE YOU GO
08/26/2014 7:49 AM EDT
The Toll On Michael Brown's Family
USA Today's Yamiche Alcindor provides an intimate look at how Michael Brown's parents have been dealing with the loss of their son:
Phones constantly ring with reporters asking for interviews or family members offering support. Last week, as demands reached a tipping point, both parents moved into hotels to shield themselves.
In the days leading up to the funeral, Brown's mother continued to cry and spoke in whispers as she tried to explain her feelings.
"They say tomorrow is going to be the hardest day, but I think today was — just seeing my baby laying there, cold," Lesley McSpadden, 34, told USA TODAY. "It did something to my heart. It's too much. It's too much."
08/26/2014 7:44 AM EDT
New Audio Allegedly Captures Moment Michael Brown Was Shot
New audio has surfaced that allegedly captures the moment when Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot dead by Darren Wilson, a white police officer, on Aug. 9.
CNN aired the unverified recording on Monday night. Six shots can be heard, followed by a pause, then several more. A private autopsy performed on Aug. 17 at the request of Brown's family found that the 18-year-old was shot 6 times, including twice in the head.
08/25/2014 12:58 PM EDT
Al Sharpton: America, It's Time To Deal With Policing
08/25/2014 12:53 PM EDT
Al Sharpton: All Of Us Are Required To Respond
Rev. Al Sharpton: All of us are required to respond to this #MikeBrownfuneral— HuffPost BlackVoices (@blackvoices) August 25, 2014
08/25/2014 12:48 PM EDT
Benjamin Crump: We Will Not Accept Three-Fifths Justice For Michael Brown
08/25/2014 12:28 PM EDT
Funeral Program Includes Tribute From Michael Brown's Parents
USA Today reporter, Yamiche Alcindor shares photo of program which includes tributes to Michael Brown from his mother and father
08/25/2014 12:22 PM EDT
Michael Brown's Stepmother: He Prophesied His Own Death
Stepmother of #MichaelBrown said the late teen "pretty much prophesied his own death and didn't realize it."— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche) August 25, 2014