Louisiana State Police are investigating an incident that led to a 6-year-old’s death at the hands of police.
Jeremy Mardis was shot and killed by police while sitting in the passenger seat of a vehicle officers were pursuing Tuesday. Chris Few, Jeremy’s father and the driver of the vehicle, was critically wounded in the shooting.
The child was struck in his head and chest, The Huffington Post reports.
Avoyelles Parish Coroner Dr. L. J. Mayeux told The Associated Press that Few reached a dead end during the chase, at which point he attempted to reverse the car into the officers. The officers then “discharged their weapons” at the vehicle, Louisiana State Police said.
“More likely than not they were shooting into the driver side, and he was on the passenger side,” Mayeux told the AP. “He was in the line of fire.”
The child, his grandmother Samantha Few told WAFB, was living with autism.
“Jeremy was a special gift from God,” she said. “He was always smiling always happy. He was diagnosed with autism when he was 2. He loved everyone he met and they loved him. As far as what caused his death, the only thing I have been told is he died from gun shot wounds. He didn’t deserve what happened. He wouldn’t hurt a fly.”
In recent months, the faces we often see associated with police shootings and violence are those of color. Historically, Black communities have long endured living under the scourge of a system that so very often views them as invaluable or disposable, leading to their hyper-incarceration and in the worst of cases, dead.
The truth is, Black communities are disproportionately targeted by police, but statistics show that police nationwide aren’t limiting their scope. According to The Guardian’s The Counted, a database that uses a crowdsourcing system to build a comprehensive record of deaths at the hands of officers, police killed 95 people in the month of October. That’s ten percent of the number of people killed in 2015 alone.
We still have two more months to go.
And sadly, police fatally shot a 6-year-old child, making Jeremy Mardis the youngest person to be killed by police this year and proving that police practices across the board should be examined, no matter which communities they’re serving.
Police violence, it seems, transcends race.
For more information on police killings this year, see here.
SOURCE: Huffington Post | VIDEO SOURCE: Inform