Arizona Police Officer Acquitted for the Murder of Unarmed Man – Media Silent Because Victim is White

Thursday, a former Arizona police officer, Philip Brailsford was acquitted of a murder charge relating to the 2016 fatal shooting of a drunk, unarmed man outside of his hotel room as officers responded to a call of a man pointing a gun out of a window.

In these politically charged times, you would think that the media would be all over this story. You would think that, but there is one major problem: the drunk, unarmed man was white. One of the more interesting things about this story is the fact that the entire incident, from start to finish, was caught on camera.

Watch the video below:

The drunk, unarmed man, Daniel Shaver, was messing around with some pellet guns that he used for hist pest control job. This behavior, though a little bit reckless, does not warrant murder. For the officers responding, they wouldn’t have known whether it was a pellet gun or not, so obviously their tension is warranted.

The Daily Wire’s Matt Walsh pointed out the absurdity of what followed when the officers arrived. Shaver came out of the room stumbling, he’s told to get on the ground and immediately does so. Shaver did everything Brailsford asked of him, but the requests were odd. Walsh lays out the entire, verbatim transcript of what Brailsford told Shaver to do:

“lie on the ground,” “put both hands on top of your head and interlace your fingers,” “take your feet and cross your left foot over your right foot,” “keep your feet crossed,” “put both hands flat in front of you” (while they’re on his head and interlaced?), “push yourself to a kneeling position” (have you ever tried to push yourself up while your arms are extended all the way in front of you?), “put both hands in the air,” “crawl towards me” (with his hands in the air?), “stop,” “crawl,” “keep your legs crossed” (while crawling?), “put your hands in the air,” “keep your legs crossed,” “crawl” (so he’s supposed to crawl again with his hands in the air and his legs crossed). In the midst of this flurry of hysterical, arbitrary commands, as Brailsford continually reminds Shaver that he’ll die if he “makes a mistake,” Shaver cries and begs for his life.

This man attempted to comply and Brailsford continued to wield his power before shooting Shaver as he crawled toward the officers, as Shaver’s pants began to slip, he grabbed for them and Brailsford unloaded his weapon.

There is so much more to the absurdity and frustratingly painful details of this case and Matt Walsh details it brilliantly, which you can read in full here.

The curious thing surrounding this story is its lack of prominence in the news cycle. Shaver was murdered and it was captured on video and none of it adds up as to why he was acquitted and yet the media silence does add up: Shaver was white. It would be too honest to tell this story because it exposes a lot of truths about law enforcement, gun deaths, and race. This is a situation wherein no riots are occurring as a byproduct of Shaver’s death, there’s no national mourning, CNN is not running anything and the Washington Post abstained from this one, the conversation doesn’t exist and yet the importance of this story is extremely profound as it relates to race in America in 2017.


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