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The graphic body camera footage of a Hispanic man who was fatally shot by a Chicago police officer following a foot pursuit last month has been released by officials.
In the pair of recordings made public this week, Anthony Alvarez, 22, can be seen bleeding to death on a sidewalk after suffering multiple gunshot wounds. Alvarez was killed by police in Northwest Chicago around 1 a.m. on March 31. According to the video, one officer yells at Alvarez to drop a weapon as they round a corner.
“Hey, drop the gun!” an officer yells at Alvarez before opening fire.
Officer Evan Solano fired a total of five rounds, according to a tactical response report obtained by Oxygen.com.
Alvarez, who appeared to be fleeing when Solano shot him nearly half a dozen times, had his back turned to police as he crumpled to the ground. He was shot in the torso, the police report stated.
“Why are you shooting me?” Alvarez, stunned, asks the two officers as he is dying in the front yard of a home.
“You had a gun,” says the officer.
“The gun is right there,” a second officer, identified only by his last name, “Encarnacion,” shouts at Solano.
“Stop moving, I’m trying to help you,” officer Encarnacion then tells Alvarez. “Stay with me dude. Stay with me.”
As a large pool of blood formed on the sidewalk, officers cut off Alvarez’s t-shirt with a pair of scissors and attempted CPR. Alvarez, can be heard groaning before losing consciousness. He was transported to Illinois Masonic Medical Center where he later died, according to a police report obtained by Oxygen.com.
A number of neighborhood residents witnessed the shooting, according to a trove of 911 audio that was released along with the bodycam footage
“They just shot someone in the corner of my house,” one witness said. “Someone’s on the floor.”
“It sounded like three shots in my alley and then my neighbor was just yelling, ‘please stop firing’ but I don’t want to look out,” another man told dispatchers.
Alvarez, who was armed with a semi-automatic pistol, didn’t follow verbal instruction and attempted to flee arresting officers, according to the Chicago Police Department. The pistol was “displayed, not used,” police said. The incident was described as an “investigatory stop” in the police report. Officers were “familiar” with Alvarez, according to the Civilian Office of Police Accountability.
"Mr. Alvarez fled as officers approached, leading to a foot pursuit by the officers,” the Civilian Office of Police Accountability wrote in a press release. “During the brief foot pursuit, officers made verbal commands to Mr. Alvarez to drop the weapon. A Chicago Police Officer fired his weapon multiple times, fatally injuring Mr. Alvarez.”
However, it’s unclear why police approached Alvarez in the first place. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfood said it was related to a “minor traffic offense,” NBC Chicago reported.
“We can't live in a world where a minor traffic offense results in someone being shot and killed," Lightfoot said. "That's not acceptable to me and it shouldn't be acceptable to anyone."
Solano was placed on administrative leave for a 30-day period, officials confirmed with Oxygen.com on Thursday. The Chicago police officer has 11 past conduct complaints, according to WLS-TV. His race is listed as white and Hispanic.
Alvarez’s family is demanding answers nearly a month after the deadly police shooting.
"I don't understand why they killed him," Veronica Alvarez, Alvzrez’s mother, also told the ABC-owned outlet.
Investigation into the police shooting is ongoing. The Civilian Office of Police Accountability declined to comment further on the case this week.
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