Former Metro Councilman and mayoral candidate Smokie Bourgeois released a statement critical of Alton Sterling Friday, saying that it is clear the man shot by a Baton Rouge cop on Tuesday morning had “refused to follow police officers’ repeated instructions” before he was killed.
“Media reports, supported by video, make one fact clear, Alton Sterling refused to follow police officers’ repeated instructions,” Bourgeois’ statement reads. “When officers had to wrestle him to the ground, nothing good would come of it.”
Sterling was shot to death during an altercation with police officers in the parking lot of the Triple S Food Mart, located at North Foster Drive and Fairfields Avenue. The two Baton Rouge police officers had respond to a call that a man selling CDs outside the store had ordered someone off the property at gunpoint. However, a witness said Sterling was not holding a gun when police showed up. His fatal confrontation with the two officers was captured by two graphic cell phone videos.
Federal investigators have taken over the probe into the shooting.
Bourgeois released his statement about the shooting a day after five police officers were fatally shot and seven others wounded in Dallas during a protest over Sterling’s death and another black man killed during a traffic stop in Minnesota.
On Friday it emerged that officials believe a lone sniper targeted the officers at the protest.
“To anyone who wants to treat police officers as shooting targets, you cannot win, you will only lose,” Bourgeois said in the prepared statement released Friday. “The emotional tide sweeping this city and country will turn against you.”
“All lives matter, particularly those of the men and women in law enforcement who place their lives on the line every day to protect you,” he wrote.