Northern Virginia

Police Release Body Cam Video of Fatal Shooting Outside Springfield Town Center

Police say Christian Parker was armed with a handgun and sitting inside a car at the mall in Northern Virginia when, they say, he refused to drop the weapon

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Fairfax County police have released body-worn camera video of a shooting in June that left a Reston, Virginia, man dead.

The edited footage from police, released Friday, shows the encounter outside Springfield Town Center from several different angles.

Police say Christian Parker was armed with a handgun and sitting inside a car at the mall when, they say, he refused to drop the weapon. That’s when they opened fire.

Fairfax County police were already looking for Parker when they spotted him walking to his car June 30. He was wanted for stealing a pistol and firing it inside his Reston home.

The edited footage released Friday shows officers approaching the car with guns drawn.

"Show me your hands — put your hands up — put your hands up," officer are heard yelling. For several minutes, officers scream at Parker, telling him to drop the gun.

"I will shoot you! Show us your hands!" an officer yells.

Fairfax County police froze some of the video to show Parker with a gun in his hands.

"Gun, gun gun, gun, drop the gun!" is heard on the video.

After officers made 30 commands, police officials say, Parker began swinging the gun from side to side and pointing it at the officers. The officers then opened fire.

But it didn’t end there. Officers could not see if Parker had dropped the gun and continued screaming at him.

An officer yelling "Show us your hands!" can be heard on the video.

After more than four minutes, another officer moved in and saw the gun on the floor of the car. The officers broke the window and pulled Parker out of the car, at which point they began first aid.

Police Chief Kevin Davis explained Friday why officers decided to confront Parker in the mall parking lot rather than follow him to a place where they could take him into custody.

"If we were to have backed up, if we had tactically repositioned ourselves, retreated, it would have afforded him an opportunity to do a number of different things that would have been very, very dangerous to the community at large," Davis said. "He could have got out of the car; he could have carjacked someone; he could have taken someone hostage; he could have run inside the mall."

Davis says Parker's family was shown the video Thursday.

"Our police officers in this particular scenario made the right decision, in my opinion," Davis said.

A member of the Fairfax County NAACP was at the news conference and asked some questions Friday, but declined to comment when asked by News4.

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