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TULSA, Okla. (AP) — A white Oklahoma police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black man last year was found not guilty Wednesday of first-degree manslaughter.

Jurors acquitted Tulsa officer Betty Jo Shelby in the Sept. 16 shooting of 40-year-old Terence Crutcher. Shelby said she fired her weapon out of fear because she said he didn’t obey her commands to lie on the ground and appeared to reach inside his SUV for what she thought was a gun. Crutcher was unarmed.

Prosecutors told jurors that Shelby overreacted. They noted Crutcher had his hands in their air and wasn’t combative — part of which was confirmed by police video taken from a dashboard camera and helicopter that showed Crutcher walking away from Shelby, hands held above his head.

Shelby’s attorneys argued that in the two minutes before cameras began recording the encounter, Shelby repeatedly ordered Crutcher to stop walking away from her and get on the ground.

Shelby also said she feared Crutcher was under the influence of PCP, a powerful hallucinogenic known as Angel Dust that makes users erratic, unpredictable and combative.

An autopsy showed PCP was in Crutcher’s system, and police said they found a vial of it in his SUV.

Crutcher’s family said police attempted to “demonize” Crutcher over the drug possession to deflect attention from the fact officers didn’t find a gun inside his SUV.

Speaking after a jury found Shelby not guilty of manslaughter, Rev. Joey Crutcher, father of Terence Crutcher, said: “Let it be known that I believe in my heart that Betty Shelby got away with murder.”

Terence Crutcher’s sister, Tiffany Crutcher, says that her brother did not show any aggression toward Shelby, did not attack her and did not threaten the officer.

Tiffany Crutcher said: “Betty Shelby murdered my brother and after she murdered my brother the Tulsa police department covered up for her.”

The killing of 40-year-old Crutcher was among a spate of officer-involved shootings in recent years that helped galvanize the Black Lives Matter movement and prompted calls for more police accountability.

Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler charged Shelby six days after the shooting. An affidavit accused her of “becoming emotionally involved to the point that she overreacted.”

Defense attorney Shannon McMurray argued that prosecutors rushed to charge Shelby for political reasons, fearing civil unrest like the angry street protests that erupted in Charlotte, North Carolina, after the fatal shooting of 43-year-old Keith Lamont Scott four days after Crutcher was killed.

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50 thoughts on “Oklahoma Police Officer Acquitted In Terence Crutcher Shooting

  1. Tyrone Sanford on said:

    Okay here it is,I serve 21 years in the military,,Training is a big part of y the man was shot,The officer beside her had a taser but did not use it,Y??? It look to me no one was it charge out there,I would have tased him before he got to the car,Poor training played a big role in this.

  2. “More white people get killed at the hands of police than blacks”, No doubt, since as you’ve said, whites out number blacks in this country. But I’m just wondering tho, why isn’t that news? BECAUSE THERE IS A RACE PROBLEM IN AMERICA CAUSED BY WHITE PEOPLE!!! They are the culprits. The facts are pretty clear; police came about in this country to control the “blacks”. Unfortunately for whites, there were plenty of bad unruly white folks as well, but it’s mighty funny how our prisons are filled with blacks overwhelming more than whites. You’d (not you necessarily) have to be pretty clueless if you think black folks commit more crimes than white folks, however, blacks are more likely to be prosecuted, and imprisoned way more often than whites who commit similar crimes AND WITH LONGER SENTENCES. Blacks are presumed guilty the second they are arrested. Whites are not, they are always given the benefit of the doubt. You saw this with the murdering bastard droof. Wouldn’t you call that racism?

  3. Police lie too much. I dont believe he was on pcp. How would she know?…then it winds up in his system! Remember THEY had the body and control of the autopsy for a minute! Its amazing how the justice system, police, grand juries, district attorney (and office), DOJ, they all lie to preserve the well-being of itself… AT OUR DESTRUCTION!!! HE DIDNT HAVE TO DIE!

  4. Dr. Larry on said:

    When the police have their gun drawn and give you commands to follow, my recommendation is to comply. Whatever you do, do not do the opposite of what your being told to do, you might just get shot. if you are high on something and are having difficulty understanding, that’s your problem. Not rocket science here.

    • You need to STFU, coon. Even when you comply your cops are on edge, scared shitless. Why train to be a cop if you’re a scary mofo. With all the weapons cops carry, how can they ever be in fear for THEIR LIFE. I Copied this from Epitome::: Nothing surprising here. Once upon a time there were nooses formed from ropes. If you breathe wrong you were lynched. Then came the dogs and hoses… billy clubs… mace…now what hell, just shoot em’! Don’t worry, you will get away with it… COP’S GET A PAID VACATION AFTER SHOOTING A BLACK PERSON.

      • specialt757 on said:

        @Retlaw Rialb
        They most certainly do get a paid vacation, some a lot longer than others. If I’m not mistaken those cops that killed Sterling in N.O. LA, are still on paid vacation. Oh the hypocrisy, I hope Betty Klan’s life is a living hell from yesterday and forever.

    • specialt757 on said:

      “…do not do the opposite of what your being told to do, you might just get shot.” This applies ONLY if you’re black and more specifically a black male, no age limit.

      • More white people get killed at the hands of police than blacks. Every year, in fact. It’s not reported as often as when a white officer kills a black person. I’ll leave it to you to figure out why. I’d be willing to bet my forty acres and a mule that no one on this site has ever heard of Gilbert Collar. A white 18 year old who was killed by a black officer, who btw, was cleared of all charges in the killing. The fact that whites make up a larger portion of the population is probably why more of them are shot by police than blacks. However, it’s a fallacy that blacks are the only people who are killed by the police, and moreover, that white police police are the only ones that shoot to kill. It’s always a tragedy when someone is killed needlessly by a cop, but until we stop making distinctions between the race of the people being killed, and the ones doing the killing, we will never move forward. Steadily pounding in the false fact that black people are the only the only ones who are killed by cops is just feeding the hate and ignorance of a people who are already looking for reasons to sink to the lowest common denominator when it comes to dealing with these issues. Everyone, not just blacks need to be careful how they interact with law enforcement these days. No one is exempt.

      • Arthur Childress on said:

        @ specialt…….You’re absolutely right specialt. The key word is “unarmed”. Over 35 percent of Black people murdered by police are unarmed. Just under 26 percent of Hispanics/Latinos were unarmed when murdered, while only 15 percent of white people shot were unarmed. Almost half of people killed by police are minorities while making up less than 38 percent of the population>

      • Arthur Childress on said:

        @ specialt……….The self-righteous, self-hating trolls that frequent this website are sooo predictable always the same negative, regurgitated bullsh*t!

  5. Rodney Sankofa on said:

    Michelle Alexander, good point on so called Christianity. Those that are in that religion Box will stay sleep. Until African Americans ban together Economically, politically and overstand the so called European law and the Corporation, we will be food for the vampire.

  6. Knowledge on said:

    U hoop and holla about how evil white ppl are but go to church on the first day of the week and pray to a white man. Come on my ppl delete that masters program that’s controlling ur mind and wake up

  7. ResponsibilityInControl on said:

    Agree2Agree, As African Americans maybe,………… just maybe the thought should be – not put yourself in that type of situation to begin with. Watch the video again you will see him reach to the vehicle so his hands were not raised the entire time. To everyone here reading so many say black men you are targets be safe and its open season on black men. Is there a discussion about not breaking the law and following simple police commands? Only innocent victim I see that followed the directive of the officer was Philando Castile that was a true crime and murder! Time to stop defending these grown ass men who cant obey the law plain and simple.

    • Arthur Childress on said:

      @ No Control………..And what law did this man break that would warrant the death penalty. NO white man would have died in this exact situation. Plain and simple.

    • Real on said:

      Really…..If you’re African American—have you ever been called the n–word? If so that’s how they feel about you whether you’re in the right or wrong. Iam an African American female and I’ve been called that just because of my skin color.

  8. Here’s my take “ResponsibilityInControl” the video shows the lady officer shooting the man with his arms raised in a submissive position. We can talk about pcp in his system and that he’s double parked and all the other rhetoric they would sale you but here is the simple truth “pcp” double parked or dis obeying commands had this been a European descendant in the exact same situation he would either be alive and well or the officer would have been convicted of manslaughter. And that’s the truth

  9. Angea on said:

    according the story the man was walking away so how could he be a threat and what really pisses me off is how they always try to make the victim look bad after he is murdered at the hands of a white police officer. She will have to live with this every day of her life and I am sure she will have no peace.

  10. She may have been acquitted and avoided going to jail, but she’s far from being free. A fact that will become known to her in the near future. I’m aware that Mr. Crutcher was no angel and made mistakes that day. But somehow, I just don’t believe this woman was in fear of her life. And for telling that lie in order to justify satisfying an impulse that cost another human being his life, the hounds of Hell will be nipping at her heels soon enough, and I for one, hope they drag her to the deepest corner of Hades. Rest easy Mr. Crutcher.

    • We need help now not what we remark will happen after death. “God to punish” he will be days late and dollars too short. A religion created by whites initially for whites, which demonized dark skinned people. Yeah folks keep waiting for justice on the other side.

      • brockingtoncharles on said:

        Michelle Alexander, I understand that you are mad: but when it comes to Christianity! you don’t know what the HELL…you’re talking about!! for that matter, aren’t you half white?

      • brockingtoncharles: Half white HELL NO. Both my parents are African American any white in my bloodstream is minuscule. Who the hell came from the dead and told you someone actually went to “hell?” Christianity has done nothing but make Blacks docile and inactive. As long as you can pass the buck to God you will do nothing but yap!

      • Knowledge on said:

        Brockton do u even know who invited Christianity. Christianity is a religion created by the Romans. Religion is created by man so because of that man and created its own lord and savior, jesus.its 2017 we as a spiritual ppl should now longer believe this virgin birth story to be the savior of the world. A white man blond hair blue eye. We as a ppl should no longer be slaves to this fable. Wake up wake up my ppl we hv been lied to

    • Real on said:

      Please just read the Bible…..What if the Bible is 100% correct. Are you willing to take that chance on your life. All the things people are saying now that GOD is not real was being said many years ago. THE BIBLE did not change. Man did and does. The WORD is the same. Everything in it has come to pass.
      Once again are you willing to take a chance on your eternal life if the BIBLE is 100? I am not.

  11. Chastity on said:

    Is this really news? I mean, we all knew this would be the outcome. If she would have been found guilty would have been news. She is white and he was black. Of course she was going to get off.

  12. Hello! on said:

    Not surprised. But just because she’s acquitted doesn’t mean she’s free. Historically, look at the lives of the acquitted police officers after controversial cases like these. They have to live in hiding and fear for the rest of their lives. It doesn’t end well for them. Prison would have been better. Nothing worse than living free and in fear.

  13. patricia williams on said:

    Does this really surprize anyone? She was not in any danger, as this man had his hands up. Whatever happened to shooting someone in the foot, so they can’t run away? These police shoot to kill, especially if you are black. NO JUSTICE,NO PEACE!

  14. specialt757 on said:

    Not even murder caught on tape by lying ass police officers will get them convicted. What a shame. Black men be careful, you are targets, in their eyes, public enemy number one.

  15. Arthur Childress on said:

    I wouldn’t give a damn if Crutcher had been smoking a crack pipe, he posed NO threat to this lying, murderous skank! Had there been even the possibility of a threat, this hateful bitch would not have been the ONLY cop to shoot this man. No white man would have died under these same circumstances or conditions!

  16. ResponsibilityInControl on said:

    What role does personal RESPONSIBILITY play in this on the part of Mr. Crutcher? Seems we are forgetting this. He was high on PCP, parked his SUV that was not broken down in the middle of the road over the center line blocking traffic. Did not listen to police commands, walk away back to his car then appear to reach onto the SUV, if the windows were up fine but, he initiated the action. If I were a passing motorist I would have been concerned as well. Thing is that we can NEVER predict what the mindset of someone is especially when on drugs. Had he killed the police officer then what? Would the family be as outraged HELL NO they wouldn’t you wouldn’t even know them! Core issues are to blame here with this guy starting with not using drugs!

  17. msstarr82 on said:

    i want to know about the two Black female jurors and what made them let her off the hook on a Black man’s murder.

    • Arthur Childress on said:

      Many Black folks, male and female are intimidated by so called white authority. The 2 or 3 Black jurors were probably not inclined to go against the wishes of the white jurors. Crutcher may have even had a better chance at justice with an all-white jury! Black self-loathing is alive and well!

    • jhuf on said:

      The Evidence maybe?,,,, Black men are murdered everyday (just look at Chicago LA DC)
      We don’t concern ourselves with that so oh well.

      • Dr. Larry on said:

        Nope. Don’t care about black men dying at the hands of other blacks. Only when whitey is involved and we can feign our concern.

      • Arthur Childress on said:

        @ jhuf…..You have no idea where my concerns lay, you ignorant, uneducated, troll. If you were to ever have an original thought, you’d go blind! Unlike you fool, I’m just as concerned about white cops who are sworn to protect and serve, instead, shooting and killing unarmed Black men. In the future, save your feeble-minded comments for somebody who gives a damn what you have to say! GFY.

  18. Epitome on said:

    Nothing surprising here. Once upon a time there were nooses formed from ropes. If you breathe wrong you were lynched. Then came the dogs and hoses… billy clubs… mace…now what hell, just shoot em’! Don’t worry, you will get away with it… sad…#givesgoodcopsabadname

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