Family demands answers when cop kills Black man running away

Family demands answers when cop kills Black man running away

July 19, 2022 0 By Ellen Novack

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Adams’ family said police officers on the scene failed to identify themselves as officers and they got out of an unmarked vehicle. “They just hopped out with the gun and they didn’t say anything,” Adams’ best friend told CBS Los Angeles.

Adams’ stepfather Audwin King told CBS Los Angeles he wants the officer who killed his stepson identified, fired, and prosecuted. “We want justice. We want his badge. We want his job,” Audwin King said of the officer. “We want murder charges.”

According to a Facebook post from San Bernardino police, two uniformed officers with the department’s specialized investigations unit were conducting surveillance in an unmarked vehicle after receiving information that a “black male armed with a gun was in the parking lot of an illegal online gambling business.”

When officers arrived, they spotted two men, one of them later identified as Adams, who police said “pulled a gun from his waistband, and began walking towards the officers’ vehicle.” 

“The officers exited their vehicle and attempted to give Adams verbal commands, but Adams ran away, toward two cars, still carrying the gun,” police said. “One of the officers fired his service weapon, striking Adams.

“Officers immediately rendered medical aid, and Adams was transported to a local hospital, where he died as a result of his injuries.”

The other man on the scene was taken into custody “without incident,” and a loaded Taurus G3C 9mm with a bullet in the chamber was recovered from the scene, police said, adding that the gun belonged to Adams.

“It’s reported Robert didn’t know there were police in the unmarked car before he ran for his life,” civil rights attorney Ben Crump tweeted on Monday. “We need a full investigation into this horrific execution!” 


Adams’ family retained Crump and co-counsel Bradley Gage to represent them. “It is unbelievable that another Black family has to bury their child due to police shooting first and asking questions later,” Crump and Gage said in a joint statement. “Robert appeared to be simply walking around the parking lot when officers exited their unmarked vehicle firing their weapons at him immediately. Robert never even had a chance to explain himself.”


San Bernardino Police Chief Darren Goodman, the city’s first Black police chief, asked for the public’s patience in a statement shared on Facebook.

“We are asking the community to please withhold their judgment on the situation until they have all the available facts and details,” the chief said.

The police department said in the post that it is aware of the surveillance video circulating online and that it “fails to provide any details or context as to what occurred during the incident … 

As with any incident of this nature, we must collect and review all of the information and available evidence [including video] before sharing details,” police said. “A video including those details and additional footage will be released.”