(PresidentialInsider.com)- The Lonoke County Arkansas sheriff’s deputy who shot and killed a teenager during a traffic stop on June 23 was fired from his job last week. According to Lonoke County Sheriff John Staley, Sergeant Michael Davis had not followed the department’s body camera policy. Staley said Davis had not activated his body camera until after he shot 17-year-old Hunter Brittain.
While the Sheriff’s office has not yet released many details about the shooting, Staley did say that the policy requires officers to activate their cameras before any interaction with the public.
Sergeant Davis’ termination was announced in a video released on the Lonoke County Sheriff’s Facebook page. In the video Sheriff Staley explained that due to Davis’ failure to activate his body-cam, there is no video of the actual shooting, only the aftermath.
Staley also said that the investigation of this officer-involved shooting would be conducted, not by the Sheriff’s office, but by the Arkansas State Police and a prosecutor.
Hunter Brittain, who is white, was pulled over by Sergeant Davis in the early morning of June 23 for unknown reasons. The teen, along with a 16-year-old passenger, had reportedly been test-driving his pickup. Previously Brittain had spent the night repairing the truck’s transmission in order to have it repaired in time to drive it to work the next morning.
Brittain’s passenger told the local news outlet that they had just left a local auto repair shop when Davis pulled them over. When Brittain could not get his truck into park, he exited the vehicle to place an oil jug behind his truck tire to stop it from hitting Davis’ patrol car.
According to Brittain’s passenger, Davis then fired at Brittain without warning.
Brittain was transported to a North Little Rock hospital where he later died.
Hunter Brittain’s family has retained civil rights attorney Devon Jacob and controversial anti-police attorney Benjamin Crump who represented George Floyd’s family in their lawsuit against Minneapolis.
Applauding the Sheriff’s move to terminate Sergeant Davis, the attorneys reiterated the importance of better training, adding “vehicle trouble should never end with a teenager being shot dead by police.”