Video has been released of a fatal police shooting which occurred in the middle of the day and in the middle of rush hour–as the driver was stuck in traffic.
The driver, 32-year-old Joseph Santos, was killed after multiple members of the Providence Police Department unloaded over 40 rounds into the cab of his white 4×4 pick-up truck.
The passenger, 37-year-old Christine Demers, survived but is currently hospitalized.
In the video, the scene unfolding is decidedly chaotic.
The body-camera worn by the officer is frequently obscured by something. The noise of afternoon traffic on Interstate 95 is relentless. The cops are yelling and Santos appears to be revving his engine and futilely burning rubber on the pavement.
Providence Police Chief Hugh Clements said:
This vehicle is being used as a weapon in an attempt to flee, and it is hitting other cars. It is ramming at least one other car and, it is rocking back and forth.
At one point, an officer shouts, “Watch out for the fucking passenger! Watch out for the fucking passenger. Watch out for the passenger. Watch out for the passenger.”
Santos had previously been barreling down the highway, before he got stuck in traffic, and began to ram the car in front of him.
Though this behavior apparently prompted the police response, Providence Public Safety Commissioner Steven Pare has yet to ascertain why Santos was attempting to flee in the first place.
According to Clements, no guns were found in the truck, but he ultimately justified the shooting and death of Santos, saying, his officers did “exactly what we would want them to do in stopping an imminent and significant threat.”
[image via screengrab]