Thursday, November 11, 2010

Homeless woodcarver killed by police

You're a homeless, hard of hearing First Nation woodcarver, somewhat inebriated, walking down Howell Street in Seattle on a sunny August afternoon. You're carrying a stick of wood that your next totem is hidden inside of, and a closed carving knife.  You are completely unaware that you are about to die.

On August 31, John T. Williams was shot by Officer Ian Birk four times in the side. He died at the scene.  An inquest is pending and there are many unanswered questions.  Birk says he saw a man with a knife and shouted three times to drop the knife.  But the knife was found in a closed position and a knifemaker says the knife cannot close by itself.  At first Birk said Williams approached him but later changed his story.  Did Williams ever even hear Birk yelling?  With four shots in the side, Williams certainly wasn't facing Birk.  You can read more at Seattle Times.

Seattle's Street Newspaper, Real Change, has been following William's story and the story of other members of Williams family, who are still being harassed by the Seattle police.  It's a sad and infuriating story you can read here.

1 comment:

Bluezy said...

They say if you remember a person they are not gone.
I read this blog and will remember.