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Couple Used Cocaine Before Being Shot Over 20 Times By Police During Car Chase
CLEVELAND — Autopsies found cocaine in the systems of two unarmed people killed by police in Cleveland after a chase that ended with 13 officers firing 137 rounds.
The reports Friday from the Cuyahoga (ky-uh-HOH’-guh) County medical examiner show cocaine in the blood of 43-year-old driver Timothy Russell and his passenger, 30-year-old Malissa Williams. He also tested positive for amphetamines and she tested positive for marijuana.
Russell was shot 23 times and Williams 24 after a half-hour pursuit involving at least 30 patrol cars. It’s unclear why Russell didn’t stop.
Some community leaders called the shootings a racially motivated execution. The police union says the shootings were justified because Russell tried to ram an officer. Some officers also thought the two were armed.