X

Body-Cam Shows Rapper Asleep Before Police Shot Him

California's Vallejo city releases video in shooting death of Willie McCoy at Taco Bell drive-thru
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 31, 2019 8:56 AM CDT
A screenshot of the video.   (City of Vallejo)

(Newser) – Police in California have released video that shows six officers opening fire on a 20-year-old man who'd been asleep in his car with a gun in his lap. Willie McCoy, 20, was killed in February in the drive-thru lane of a Taco Bell in Vallejo. The release includes a 30-minute video with the police department's account of the shooting, NBC reports, as well as raw footage from the officers' bodycams. It shows McCoy appearing to stir and apparently scratch his arm. The police video is slowed down at that point, and it appears to show McCoy reaching down, though the gun isn't visible. After a barrage of bullets, officers can be heard telling McCoy, "Show me your hands!" The video ends as an officer nears the car. Family attorneys have said McCoy, a Bay Area rapper known as Willie Bo, was shot about 25 times. The video was shown earlier this month to the family, who wanted the city to release it. The six officers are back on active duty.

McCoy's family says police executed him when he wasn't awake or alert, and the video shows officers did not try to wake him, the Guardian reports. They kept their guns pointed at his head for several minutes as he slept. When they realized the gun had no magazine in it, one officer can be heard saying, "He's only got one shot if he shoots." At this point in the video, police added a caption saying the gun actually was loaded with an extended 14-round magazine. One officer then said, "If he reaches for it, you know what to do." McCoy did not say anything to officers as he began to stir. A few seconds later, McCoy "was shot to pieces," a family lawyer said Friday. His cousin calls his death "a racist act." The family has notified the city that it plans to file a civil rights lawsuit, but Marc McCoy isn't hopeful that the video will bring justice. "There’s a thousand videos on YouTube that show police misconduct, whether it's beatings of citizens or killing them," he told the Guardian. "It gets dismissed." (Read more police shooting stories.)

My Take on This Story
Show results without voting  |  
10%
4%
40%
3%
29%
14%