Tulsa Police Officer Betty Shelby Charged with Manslaughter
Five days after Tulsa police officer Betty Shelby shot and killed Terence Crutcher after the 40-year-old placed his hands in the air, the Oklahoma cop was charged with first-degree manslaughter, according to Fox 23.
Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler announced the news moments ago in a press conference, which you can view here.
Crutcher, whose car had broken down in the middle of the road, was unarmed when he was shot and killed.
A dash cam video as well as a video from a police helicopter captured the shooting, showing Shelby fired her gun after another cop tasered the man.
There is no video from the initial encounter between Shelby and Crutcher because police say her dash camera was not activated since her emergency lights had not been activated.
And no body cam video exists because the Tulsa Police Department has not purchased any, despite receiving a federal grant last year to do just that.
Shelby is claiming that she suspected Crutcher of being high on PCP, which made her fear for her life, but she never mentioned that to dispatchers when she initially confronted the man, who was standing on the side of the road near his stalled car, which was in the middle of the road.
Police later claimed they found a vial of PCP in Cruthcher’s car, but even if that is true, it still would not justify shooting him.
They also claim Shelby shot Crutcher because he was reaching into his vehicle, but the video from the helicopter seems to show it was rolled up because a streak of blood can be seen on it after she kills him.
The Huffington Post reported earlier today that Shelby not only admitted to smoking marijuana twice on her job application, but she has a history of domestic disturbances.
Shelby joined the Tulsa police force in 2011 after she became a deputy for the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office in 2007, according to NBC News. Her husband is also a police officer and was on duty the night Crutcher was shot. In fact, Shelby’s husband, Dave Shelby, was in the helicopter that flew overhead and recorded the moments leading up to the shooting, which was released by the Tulsa Police Department on Monday. In the video, an officer is overheard describing Crutcher as a “bad dude,” however Tulsa police spokesman claims Dave did not make the comment.
Shelby has divorced and been re-married at least once. According to the job application she submitted to the sheriff’s office in 2007, the new wife of Shelby’s ex-husband noted that she filed a protective order against her in 2002 to help put an end to harassing phone calls she claims Shelby made to her. The order was eventually denied and Shelby maintained her innocence.
Nearly a decade earlier, Shelby also noted on the same application that she experienced a breakup in 1993 with her then-boyfriend. She said the split led to the two damaging each others cars and that temporary restraining orders were filed, which were eventually tossed out.
CNN noted five discrepancies from the shooting death between what police say and what the videos show.
This is a breaking story, so we will be adding to this article after it is published.