Riots in Salt Lake City after police reportedly shoot black teen brandishing broomstick

Riots in Salt Lake City after police reportedly shoot black teen brandishing broomstick
Image: KSTU screen grab

The Rio Grande District of Salt Lake City erupted in chaos Saturday night, with angry crowds shouting and throwing rocks, bottles, and other debris at police, after a black teen was shot and taken to an area hospital. The teen’s identity has yet to be revealed.

An on-air report by Fox affiliate KSTU indicates the details are still sketchy and that authorities have not yet determined whether the shots fired at the 17-year-old even came from police weapons. Det. Greg Wilking of the Salt Lake City Police Department told reporters, “I don’t have much details on the shooting itself,” adding that “an altercation [was] taking place, and our officers intervened.”

According to the televised report, which follows, the altercation was between the teen and a 40-year-old man. Police were called, and as they arrived on the scene, the youth picked up and began waving a broomstick.

There were numerous eyewitnesses were out on the street owing to the presence of a homeless shelter in the vicinity. One who was interviewed in the video, Selam Mohammed, claims that police failed to give the teen an adequate chance to surrender.

The police said, ‘Drop it’, once, then they shot him four times. We were trying to break it up before the police even came, but the police ran in on foot and pulled their guns out already. They already had them, like, as soon as he was running he was already grabbing for his gun, not even trying to Tase him or anything.

Police have affirmed that initially two officers were involved and at least one of them fired shots. Once the teen was hit, rioting ensued and nearly 100 officers from various law enforcement agencies were dispatched to the scene.

This is a developing story that will be updated as more information becomes available.

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles is a freelance writer.

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