Crime - Sacto 911

What you need to know about the Stephon Clark shooting in Sacramento

Black Lives Matter protesters rally against police shooting of Stephon Clark

Protesters from Black Lives Matter and other groups came together Thursday to march against the shooting death of Stephon Clark by Sacramento Police officers. The demonstrators shut down I Street and Interstate 5 before heading to Golden 1 Center.
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Protesters from Black Lives Matter and other groups came together Thursday to march against the shooting death of Stephon Clark by Sacramento Police officers. The demonstrators shut down I Street and Interstate 5 before heading to Golden 1 Center.

More than six weeks ago, Stephon Clark, 22, was shot by two Sacramento Police Department officers March 18 in the Meadowview neighborhood as he was standing in his grandparents' backyard. Police responded to the area that night after a neighbor called 911 to report broken car windows and a man who hopped into a neighbor's backyard.

A Sacramento County Sheriff's Department helicopter reported seeing Clark break a neighbor's sliding glass window with a "toolbar," and video from the same helicopter shows him jumping into a backyard later identified as belonging to his grandparents. The two Sacramento officers who responded to the 911 call followed Clark into the backyard. One yelled, "Gun, gun, gun," before both fired a total of 20 rounds in his direction.

Clark ultimately was found with a cellphone and no weapons.

The incident thrust Sacramento into the national spotlight soon after, becoming a focal point in the conversation of police use-of-force since the March shooting. Here's the latest in the case.

There are two separate investigations into the shooting

The Sacramento Police Department and the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office are conducting their own investigation into the March 18 shooting of Stephon Clark.

Attorney General Xavier Becerra is providing his own review. Becerra announced he would provide oversight in late March, saying local law enforcement officials, including Sacramento police Chief Daniel Hahn, urged him to do so. His office could file criminal charges against the two officers if appropriate, Becerra said. His office also will review the department's use-of-force policies and training.

The Sacramento Police Department's internal investigation will only look at whether the officers followed department training and protocols, as well as if they should face disciplinary action.

The Sacramento County District Attorney's Office, which reviews all officer-involved shootings and in-custody deaths in the county, will investigate if the officers committed any crimes during the Clark shooting. In a press conference a month later, Sacramento County District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert said it could take several months before her office completes their investigation.

The county coroner's review differs sharply from the family's private autopsy

The legal team representing the Clark family hired pathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu to conduct a private autopsy of Clark's body. His findings, shared in a March 30 press conference, concluded Clark was shot eight times, six of which struck him in the back.

Omalu's findings came before the Sacramento Police Department received the county's autopsy, which was completed and forwarded to the department and the city on Friday. In a letter to the Police Department, Sacramento County Coroner Kimberly Gin said she brought in four separate pathologists to review the case "in light of the erroneous information that was released from the private autopsy."

Gin determined Clark was shot seven times total, with three rounds - not six - striking him in the back. Gin's findings also included a toxicology report, which found traces of cocaine, cannabis and codeine in Clark's system, as well as traces of codeine and hydrocodone in his urine.

Omalu did not release toxicology findings during his March 30 presentation.

Protesters continue to demand charges against the officers

Protesters met in front of the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office for the sixth consecutive week on Tuesday, demanding she file charges against the two officers involved in the shooting.

In recent weeks, protesters have held barbeques in front of her office, as well as blocked the exits of a parking lot where employees park their cars on the back side of the building. Two women were arrested for allegedly failing to disperse on April 12 at one of the protests.

Early on, protesters shut access to two Sacramento Kings games at Golden 1 Center and blocked both sides of Interstate 5 during the afternoon commute. In one demonstration in south Sacramento, a sheriff's deputy struck a protester who was marching in the street with others; she had to be hospitalized.

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