Relatives of the man police shot and killed in a Ohio Walmart Tuesday said he was only carrying a “toy gun” — but it wasn’t exactly a Super Soaker.
John Crawford, 22, was carrying an MK-177 (.177 caliber) BB/Pellet Rifle, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced Thursday.
The weapon, manufactured by Crosman, is also known as a variable pump air rifle.
It is highly unlikely that the MK-177 would kill a human but it can kill squirrels, snakes, rabbits or small birds if aimed properly.
It’s certainly not a toy.
Public Information Officer Jill Del Greco said that the Beavercreek Police Department asked the Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation to look into the shooting.
“BCI is a state agency that only has the authority to investigate when we’re requested by local law enforcement,” Public Information Officer Jill Del Greco. “It’s nothing that’s out of the ordinary because we can act as an outside, independent agency to look at it.”
Crawford’s girlfriend said she was reaching out to civil rights organizations, including the NAACP and National Action Network, to seek justice, the Dayton Daily News reported.
LeeCee Johnson, the mother of Crawford’s children — John Crawford IV, 1, and Jayden Crawford, 4 months — said she was on the phone with Crawford when he died.
“I feel like they shot him down like he was not even human,” she told the Ohio paper.
According to Johnson, Crawford was playing video games before heading over to the toy section where he picked up the “toy gun.”
“And the next thing I know, he said, ‘It’s not real,’ and the police start shooting and they said, ‘Get on the ground,’ but he was already on the ground because they had shot him,” she added.
Crawford, who said she was in a different part of the store at the time, wants the police to lose their jobs and go to jail for killing her boyfriend.
Beavercreek Police Chief Dennis Evers reportedly defended the actions of Sgt. Dave Darkow and Officer Sean Williams the next day at a press conference.
Emergency dispatchers received a 911 call about someone brandishing a “rifle-like weapon” at customers in the store, he said.
Evers said that Crawford did not comply with the officers’ commands and that they acted appropriately, according to the Dayton Daily News.
“The response of the officers was instrumental in containing the situation, minimizing the risk to customers,” he said.
Evers did not say whether Darkow or Williams pulled the trigger.
Both officers are on paid leave while the incident is under investigation.
Source: New York Daily News