GRAPHIC: Cell phone video emerges in St. Louis fatal police shooting

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WARNING: This video contains graphic images and language

St. Louis, MO -- Following a fatal officer-involved shooting of their own, St. Louis police are taking a much different approach than officers in Ferguson did just ten days ago.

Chief Dotson released cell phone video Wednesday that showed police shooting the 25-year-old Kajieme Powell.

According to Chief Dotson, Powell stole two energy drinks from the Six Stars Market in the 8700 block of Riverview. Dotson said after the suspect walked out of the store with the drinks, he went back inside the store and grabbed a pastry. Dotson said the store owner followed the suspect out of the store and police were dispatched to the area.

According to police, the suspect pulled out a knife and was acting erratically when officers arrived. Dotson told reporters the suspect told responding officers to "shoot me now, kill me now." Dotson said officers asked the suspect to drop the knife, which he was holding in an overhead grip, and the suspect refused to do.

The witness who shot the video took it to a lawyer who then took it to the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department. Along with the cell phone video, police also made surveillance video from inside a nearby store, as well as 911 calls, available to the media.

Video shows Powell pacing back and forth on Riverview Boulevard around 12:20 Tuesday afternoon. Once police pull up, the man yells "shoot me! Shoot me!" Powell is heard saying.

Powell then steps onto a retaining wall, turned his back toward an officer and both open fire. News 4 counted at least nine gunshots on the video. Powell falls off the wall and onto a sidewalk, where he died.

"These officers felt they were in a lethal situation, that their lives were in jeopardy and I think we have to remember that these officers have a right at the end of the day to go home," Chief Dotson said. "They have a right to protect themselves."

The video was taken from a distance and viewers of the video can't see what the man is holding. Police said he had a steak knife.

Dotson said all of these images were made public Wednesday because he promised a crowd that gathered at the shooting scene transparency and explanations, with many asking why officers didn't use a taser.

"The way that tasers operate; there are two probes that are fired. Both probes have to make contact with the individual and their skin in order for them to work," Dotson said. "This individual had a jacket on. I'm not saying tasers are not an option, what I'm saying is tasers are not 100 percent."

A witnesses to this shooting was alderwoman Dionne flowers, who released a statement saying that she agrees with what the police have released.

Powell recently moved to St. Louis to live with his grandmother. Police say they've been in contact with her.

TM & © 2014 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

7 comments

  • amb5886

    Now that’s a justified shooting. You’re waving a knife around at cops and you don’t drop it when you’re told you’re going down every time. You don’t give the guy a chance to try to stab you before you shoot. Same thing if a crook has a gun. Even if he isn’t pointing at you it’s still a treat. But of course people will make this about race and probably riot in the streets.

    • Garry Green

      I am from canada. we do not kill people for stealing 2 pop cans and placing them on the sidewalk. the whole video… this guy had no knife…. all of a sudden you hear the cop yell, drop the knife, but we never seen him holding 1. the death rate by police is out of control… now if this murder victim was waving a huge machete you might have reason to shot him in the leg…if he does not drop it, you still have 1 more leg and 2 arms to shot a bullet into until he drops it… but why use such a violent amount of point blank firepower, enough to kill a lion, tiger or a gorilla? the crimes never match the death sentences sadly happening like traffic tickets, handed out without a judge or jury.

      • Common Sense True American for all people VOTE FOR ME NEXT ELECTION 2016

        Garry, I’m sure you are nice person but your comment of you being Canadian is irrelevant and Canadians not killing, I’m sure is not 100% accurate. The Police officers, We Americans, do not kill because of stealing 2 soda cans or food.

        This man who STOLE, broke the LAW! But this THIEF YELLING SHOOT ME!! Who might of or might not had a weapon on him,does causes to ALARM to protect ones self! If a suspect is approaching YOU with what potentially could be a weapon, Do you take the risk of allowing them to get close enough to you? The Police officers have to take all necessary precautions to protect themselves. Shooting someone who is approaching you with a what you think is weapon that can harm you, in the LEG, is not easy to hit, like in the MOVIES! If you MISS and he approaches or potentially rushes them and they miss, Now what! That is why they are trained to shoot in the Chest area. Ask yourself this, if you are the officer and you have a crazy/angry person with what you think might be weapon that can cause harm to YOU or anyone else, are you going to shoot for the leg or put them down? How close do you potentially allow them to get close to you!

        NOW TO WHOM EVER RE-REPORTED THIS ON THIS WEBSITE FROM CNN. GET THE REPORT CORRECT!!!

        Paragraph 7
        “Powell then steps onto a retaining wall, turned his back toward an officer and both open fire.”

        This is inaccurate from both the Video and the CNN Report you are using. In the CNN Report they clearly state and from the Video, what a BLIND DOG can see is this man walking towards the officers!!

        CNN Reports “One of the officers says, “Drop the knife.” Powell looks back over his shoulder for an instant, then steps over a low concrete wall, off the sidewalk, moving closer to the officers as he is ordered again, “Drop the knife.””

        *The topic of a Stun Gun is addressed in the CNN report. Which I thought should be their first choice, but it gives a potential reason to this scenario as to why this would not be used or the best choice.

        If you are going to Report, Report accurately and Truthfully or don’t report ever!! This inaccurate report gives people the wrong information and a domino effect happens in our society, of wrongfully accusing these two individual cops, than the Police dept, than potentially to Race, as we are seeing!!

    • Common Sense True American for all people VOTE FOR ME NEXT ELECTION 2016

      Your comment does not help, by starting off saying its Justified! Killing another human is not a good thing. He was not waving a knife! Now I do agree with you don’t give the guy a change to inflict harm, he is a potential a threat. And we have a society that is breaking down and using the easy way out, and wanting to be angry for many different reasons, destroy other Americans business/property, that are not involved and stealing, etc. That is our Society and it NEEDS to CHANGE NOW!!

  • Benjamen S. Long

    …this is another horrible case of “suicide by cop”; the result of moral decay. He approached the officers with a KNIFE in hand, and in complete disregard to the order to STOP. We need to stop focusing on the “effects”, and deal with the CAUSE,

    • Common Sense True American for all people VOTE FOR ME NEXT ELECTION 2016

      We MIGHT have a “Suicide by cops” Which sadness me for this individual, what could have caused him to want that.

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