Louisiana Police U-Turn After Releasing Man Who Shot Disabled Black Panhandler Dead for 'Harassing Trader Joe's Customers'
The 21-year-old white woman he supposedly harassed called BS on the cops.
Police in Louisiana are looking for a man they say killed a panhandler — despite releasing him five days earlier.
61-year-old Danny Buckley, a disabled and homeless Black man, was shot dead in the parking lot of a Trader Joe’s in Baton Rouge on Saturday night.
Jace Boyd, 24, was questioned by officers on the scene; according to a police report obtained by The Advocate, he said Buckley was “aggressively harassing customers”.
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Police let him go.
But on Monday, a woman who claimed she was the last person Buckley asked money from gave a very different version of events.
“Yes, Mr. Buckley did ask me for money and he did continue to ask me for money until I got into my vehicle with my roommate. However, that should not be a death sentence,” Kaylee wrote.
She claimed she heard Boyd shouting at Buckley to leave them alone — followed by a gunshot.
“I never felt threatened by Mr. Buckley in any way,” the 21-year-old said.
She said that when they tried to give a statement, police turned them away.
When she called police the next day to try give her statement again, they told her they were about to put out a flyer with a picture of her car on it, asking her to come forward as a witness — despite sending her away the night before.
“When giving my statement I made it very clear to the officers that if I, a 21 year old white female, did not feel threatened by Mr. Buckley… then I thought that it was completely unnecessary for the actions taken by Mr. Boyd.”
“The detectives responded and told me that there was ‘more to the story than just my part’… I’m not sure what else could be involved in the story that would justify the actions taken by Mr. Boyd. I can only hope that Mr. Buckley receives justice.”
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Kaylee said she wasn’t initially going to comment publicly and wanted to wait and see if police handled the situation correctly, “but it’s clear that they have not.”
After the shooting, Buckley — who was unarmed — was rushed to hospital, where he died of a single gunshot wound to the abdomen. His family claim it was a hate crime.
They also claim Buckley, who was well-known in the community, had a painful pre-existing condition that made it difficult for him to be mobile, let alone threaten anyone.
“In the South, in America, it is known that you do not talk to white women if you’re a Black male,” family lawyer Ryan Thompson said. “That was his crime.”
He compared the killing to that of Emmett Till, the 14-year-old boy lynched in 1955 for supposedly flirting with a white woman.
After mounting public pressure, Baton Rough Police finally issued an arrest warrant for Boyd on Tuesday, on charges of second-degree murder and illegal use of a weapon. Two days later, he’s still at large.
Thompson claims they knew where he was on Wednesday, but the difference in how he is apprehended again comes down to race.
“Had he been black, his mother’s house would have been searched, the door would have been kicked in,” he told WBRZ. “They probably would have called the SWAT team in and had him come out. We know disparities, the bias, difference in treatment.”
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