Man Who Filmed SC Shooting Considered Erasing Video

But he turned it over to Scott family instead
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2015 2:33 AM CDT
Updated Apr 9, 2015 7:48 AM CDT
Man Who Filmed SC Cop Shooting Feared for His Life
Protesters speak in front of city hall in North Charleston, SC, last night during a protest against the killing of Walter Scott.   (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)

The disturbing video that resulted in murder charges for a North Charleston, SC, police officer almost never saw the light of day. In an MSNBC interview, Feiden Santana says he feared for his life after taking video of Michael Slager shooting Walter Scott in the back as the 50-year-old Scott ran away. "I thought about erasing the video and just getting out of the community, you know Charleston, and living someplace else," the 23-year-old says. "I knew the cop didn't do the right thing." Instead of deleting the video or leaving town, Santana turned it over to Scott's family. "I wanted them to have this and do something about it," he says. "Because I knew if I didn't give it to them, nothing would happen."

In an earlier NBC News interview, Santana said the pair were struggling on the ground before he started filming. Slager "had control of Scott, and Scott was trying just to get away from the Taser," he said. According to a Guardian analysis of the video and police scanner audio, Slager made a radio call saying Scott had "grabbed my Taser" just six seconds after firing the final shot. The officer was fired yesterday, and Scott's brother tells the New York Daily News he will pray for him, even though he "was using my brother for target practice." The brother says he doesn't believe Scott, who owed child support, was really stopped for a broken brake light. "He made sure in every vehicle that all the lights were working," he says. "He would say, 'I don't want to get stopped by police.'" (More Walter Scott stories.)

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