Philadelphia Police Release Surveillance Video of Officer-Involved Shooting in Fairhill Corner Store.
A surveillance video of the officer-involved shooting that killed Alexander Spencer on Friday night inside a Fairhill convenience store has been made public by Philadelphia police. The release of the video comes after Spencer’s mother and others questioned the use of lethal force by Officer Raheem Hall.
The video, which was made public on Tuesday, depicts two police officers trying to handcuff 28-year-old Spencer inside the Jennifer Tavern convenience store at Mascher and Cambia streets. When a gunshot hits Officer Hall, both officers are visible with their weapons holstered. In response, Hall draws his gun and fires it into Spencer’s back.
The cops were holding Spencer down while gunshots could be heard in a 34-second cell phone video of the incident that was shared on Instagram over the weekend. During a press conference on Tuesday morning, Police Commissioner Kevin Bethel said that the officers were carrying out a “security check” in the area and were searching for someone who had a warrant for a non-fatal shooting. It is unclear whether Spencer was the person they were looking for.
In compliance with police protocol, the officers have been placed on administrative leave for failing to turn on their body cameras before the shooting. Six-year police department veteran Officer Hall sustained four gunshot wounds during the altercation.
Before attempting to restrain Spencer, the officers are seen in the surveillance footage searching him and another man. A physical altercation breaks out, and one of the officers gets shot in the process. Shortly before Officer Hall shoots Spencer, a gun that is thought to belong to Spencer is seen sliding across the floor in the video. Another person, identified as Jose Quinones-Mendez, is seen grabbing the weapon and leaving the area.
The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 5 has offered a $10,000 reward for information that leads to Quinones-Mendez’s capture in response to his involvement.
Commissioner Bethel offered his condolences to Spencer’s family and stressed the importance of an open and honest investigation. District attorney Larry Krasner attended the press conference and announced that additional information would be released in the upcoming weeks. The D.A.’s Office, the Citizens Police Oversight Commission, internal affairs and shooting investigations units of the police department, an autopsy report, and firearms examinations will all be involved in the investigation.
The community is waiting for more details about the circumstances surrounding this tragic incident while the investigation is ongoing.