A police officer in Waukegan, Illinois has been fired after shooting at a Black couple earlier this week.
The fatal incident occurred on Tuesday evening when 19-year-old Marcellis Stinnette and his girlfriend, Tafarra Williams, were sitting in their car outside of Williams's mother's house. Authorities responded to a call claiming that there was a suspicious vehicle near Liberty Street and Oak Street. When an officer went to check the car, the couple pulled off. Later that night, the vehicle was spotted near Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and South Avenue.
"A second officer located the vehicle in the area of MLK and South Street," Waukegan Police Commander Edgar Navarro said.
"The officer exited the vehicle and the vehicle that he was investigating then began to reverse. The officer fired into the vehicle."
Both Stinnette and Williams were hit. Stinnette later died of his wounds at a local hospital. Meanwhile, Williams is attempting to recover from serious injuries after being shot in the stomach.
Williams and other witnesses have called out the police for their handling of the night's events. Williams claims that the officers never told them that they were under arrest.
"Why did you shoot? I didn't do nothing wrong. I have a license. You didn't tell me I was under arrest. Why did you just flame up my car like that? Why did you shoot?," Williams said.
"When I got there, she said, "Mama, they just shot us for nothing'," Tafarra's mother, Clifftina Johnson, added.
A witness near the shooting also backed up the couple's account of what happened that night.
"The police officer got out of the car. When he told them to stop, he told her to stop, she was scared. She put her up hands, she started yelling, 'Why you got a gun?' She started screaming. He just started shooting," local resident Darrell Mosier said.
The Illinois State Police Department is currently conducting an internal investigation regarding the incident. There is no word as to whether the FBI will investigate the matter as well.
"I am confident in the work being done by the Illinois State Police and welcome the assistance of the FBI. As I have said before, once the investigation is concluded, all the evidence will be reviewed and a final decision will be made with respect to any potential charges," Lake County State's Attorney Michael Nerheim said.
Attorney Ben Crump will represent the couple as both families weigh their legal options.
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