Washington DC

Demonstrators Protest Fatal Police Shooting of Teen Outside DC Police Station

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Demonstrators protesting the fatal police shooting of 18-year-old Deon Kay Wednesday got face-to-face with police outside the 7th District station Saturday night.

Kay, of Southeast D.C., died after a Metropolitan Police Department officer shot him once. 

Police put up police tape at the front door of the 7th District Saturday night and the protesters pulled it down. Tape has been put back up.

Earlier, Saturday evening, a vigil for Kay was held not far from his home.

A group called DC Protests said it dedicated this weekend to Kay and others killed by law enforcement. The group gathered at Meridian Hill Park, also known as Malcolm X Park, and marched through Northwest D.C. in response to the shooting of Kay. The group shut down the Key Bridge in both directions for more than an hour.

Officers went to “investigate a man with a gun” at about 3:50 p.m. Wednesday when they saw several young men in a vehicle. Two of the men ran and Kay “brandished” a gun, police say. An officer then shot him in the 200 block of Orange Street SE. He was taken to a hospital, where he died. 

Responding officers activated their body-worn cameras, the department said Wednesday night. The footage was released Thursday.

The 11-minute video shows the shooting and its aftermath from one officer’s perspective. 

At least one officer ran out of a car and shouted, “Don’t move.” Within moments, that officer opened fire on Kay, who appeared to have something in his right hand. The item was a gun, police say. 

Kay cried out and fell to the ground. 

Mayor Muriel Bowser released body camera footage of the fatal police shooting of Deon Kay Thursday as required by new police reform laws. News4's Mark Segraves has the story.

As one officer tended to Kay, another can be heard searching for a gun that he says Kay threw. He looked on a playground near a housing complex and eventually said, “I got it.” Emergency vehicles can be heard on their way. 

An officer can be heard requesting a union representative. 

“Look. You don’t say anything to anyone,” he can be heard saying.

The officer who apparently opened fire asked, “Is he in bad shape?” The second officer told him to sit down and that “people are taking care of everything.”

The video ends with officers appearing to escort away the officer who opened fire.

It is not clear what happened prior to the video.

Police identified the officer who opened fire as Alexander Alvarez. He’s been on the force since 2018. He and Kay had prior contact, Police Chief Peter Newsham said.

The gun police reported seeing in Kay’s hand was found 98 feet from the scene of the shooting, Newsham said. A hill separates the scene of the shooting and the area where an officer appeared to be looking for a gun.

Police said in a “community briefing video” released at the same time as the longer video that a gun can be seen in Kay’s right hand when the video is viewed in slow motion.

Every D.C. officer has a body camera. The cameras have a pre-roll function through which they can retain the previous 30 seconds of footage once activated. 

Kay is the first person killed by police since police reforms went into effect this summer. 

Emergency legislation approved by the D.C. Council in June and signed by Mayor Muriel Bowser the following month requires MPD to release body camera footage within five days of any incident in which officers use deadly or serious force. The department also is now required to release the names of involved officers. Families have the option to view the footage but prevent its release to the public. 

D.C. lawmakers passed the sweeping reforms amid historic protests in the city after the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police. 

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