MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Teto Wilson, a witness to the fatal police shooting of Jamar Clark, says he never saw the 24-year-old in the sort of struggle with police that Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman described Wednesday as he outlined why charges wouldn’t be brought against the two Minneapolis officers involved in the shooting.
“I didn’t see any fighting between Jamar Clark and any of those officers,” Wilson said on Thursday.
He says he remembers clearly what he saw in the early morning hours of Nov. 15, 2015.
“From my vantage point, Jamar was not, absolutely not resisting,” Wilson said.
He says he saw one officer lying on top of Clark while the other had his knee on his back or the ground.
“[Clark] was on his stomach and he was face down,” Wilson said. “Now they are saying he was face up — could be could be the case, but however it still doesn’t justify what ultimately happened.”
The county attorney says Clark fought with officers and tried to get control of one of their guns.
He says Clark told officers he was ready to die, and after he refused to let go of the gun, he was shot in the head.
“It didn’t match what I saw,” Wilson said. “I know my eyes.”
Wilson says he heard nothing from officers or from Clark moments before he heard gunshots.
“I didn’t hear the cop screaming,” he said. “I didn’t hear him scream, ‘He’s got my gun.’ I didn’t hear any of that, and I just saw what was going on, and it was night and we were just across the street, so if they were saying those things they were whispering.”
Wilson says he could not tell if Clark was handcuffed, but he believes Freeman’s story of what happened does not add up.
“Let’s just say he was not cuffed,” Wilson said, “then if he was reaching and fighting for a gun, then you would see arms flailing, something going on, and I just did not see that.”
Wilson says because officers were not charged in Clark’s death, there’s a mistrust of police and the legal system within the community.
“I was upset about what [Freeman] actually reported happened,” he said. “Clearly, it was based off of what the officers reported.”
Wilson hopes eventually that all sides will realize that working together to make Minneapolis better for everyone is the way to go.