Today the City of Akron held a press conference to release new preliminary information on the fatal officer involved shooting of 25-year-old Akron native Jayland Walker. The incident occurred at about 12:30am early Monday morning June 27th. In compliance with an Akron city council directive, the city had to release preliminary information within 7 days of an officer involved shooting. The city decided to initially release some body worn camera footage and some surveillance footage of the incident.
In the full body worn camera footage of the officer who initiated the actual vehicle stop, you can hear the officer tell dispatch that the reason for the stop was a traffic violation. The actual vehicle code violation that was observed by the officer to initiate the stop has not yet been released. After the officer attempts to stop the vehicle by activating the police cruisers lights and sirens, Jayland Walker refuses to yield. The officer continues by pursuing the vehicle. Speeds during the pursuit reached about 80 mph.
As the pursuit continues, Jayland Walker enters the expressway. This is when it appears as though a shot is fired from inside the car from the driver side window. The police officer says “Shots fired, the vehicle just had a shot come out its door”.
The pursuit progresses and at least 13 other officers join in the pursuit. Jayland Walker then exits the expressway and enters into a residential neighborhood when he eventually pulls over and exits the vehicle from the passenger side door wearing what police are calling a ski mask. Jayland Walker continues to flee from police on foot. Two police officers deployed their tasers to stop the fleeing suspect, but those deployments were ineffective and despite verbal commands to stop running, Jayland Walker continued to flee.
Eventually, Jayland Walker abruptly stops running and turns towards the pursuing police officers. This is when up to 8 police officers opened fire on Walker. Those 8 officers have been placed on paid administrative leave. 5 other police officers who were on scene reportedly did not fire their weapons. Akron Police Chief Steve Myler said that investigators “do not yet know the exact number of rounds that were fired.” The medical examiner has said that they counted at least 60 wounds on Jayland Walkers body, which may account for some of those wounds being entry and exit wounds.
Police Chief Steve Myler assured the media during the press conference that an independent investigation would be conducted by the Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation. The findings of the investigation will then be handed over to a grand jury. Chief Myler said all 8 officers were cooperating with the investigation and that all 8 officers expressed in their initial statements that they felt that Jayland Walker, who they believed to be armed, was “moving into a firing motion”.
Chief Myler also confirmed that a shell casing was found on the road in the area where officers first reported a shot coming from Walkers vehicle that is consistent with the firearm that police recovered inside the vehicle. This is just the first release of information by local officials so stay with PhillyCrimeUpdate.com as we cover this case, and crime in the Philadelphia area.
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