Another day, another police shooting — or so it seems.
An Ohio sheriff’s deputy has the blood of a teenage boy on his hands after fatally shooting him at a court appearance on Wednesday.
According to NBC News, 16-year-old Joseph Haynes was hit by a single bullet at Franklin County Courthouse in Columbus. Haynes was there for a hearing regarding a charge of menacing with a firearm when a confrontation transpired between the unnamed deputy and the teen’s family members.
"At some point as the hearing was concluding there was an altercation that ensued involving the deputy and some of the family members," said Franklin County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Rick Minerd.
The deputy was knocked down to the ground, prompting him to open fire and shoot Haynes in the abdomen. Haynes was rushed to a nearby hospital where he later died.
My God.— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) January 18, 2018
In juvenile court, after a police officer pushed a boy's mother against the wall, & the boy intervened, the cop shot & killed him.
16 years old. An unarmed 16 year old boy.
His name is #JosephHaynes.
The 55th American killed by police in 2018.https://t.co/Ep0keWtrOZ
Minerd claimed that the deputy “came under attack from some of the folks that were involved,” which allegedly included Haynes.
"On behalf of Sheriff [Dallas] Baldwin and our office, we want to extend out condolences to the Haynes family and wish the officer who was involved a speedy recovery," Minerd said.
While the deputy reportedly sustained some injuries that he sought medical treatment for, they are non-life-threatening.
An investigation into the shooting is underway, however, Minerd’s statements seem to suggest that the deputy’s actions were justifiable since he was “under attack.”
Haynes' grandmother, however, recounted a very different story that indicates the deputy as the aggressor.
She recalled that the officer was mistreating Haynes’ mother, ordering her to exit the courtroom without her belongings.
"[The deputy] started going over and pushing [Haynes’ mom] up against the wall and stuff ... so Joey told him to leave his mom alone ... and he wouldn’t leave his mom alone, so Joey went over there and grabbed ahold of his shoulder,” she said.
More details about what exactly led to the shooting will surely emerge as the investigation continues, but the tragic fact remains that a 16-year-old kid lost his life because yet another trigger-happy member of law enforcement couldn't de-escalate a situation without firing his weapon.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Pixabay, Skitterphoto