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‘It was an ambush,’ – Alabama Black family protests after cops called by tow driver shoot Stephen Perkins dead on his front lawn, and ‘Repo’ firm seize victim’s truck as he lay dying feet away – police apologize after inaccurate account is exposed

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Neighbor’s security footage shows Alabama repossession firm seizing black man’s truck as he lays dying feet away

Stephen Perkins, 39, was gunned down by cops from Decatur Alabama Police Dept on Sept in front of his home in Decatur, Alabama

Police within seconds of arriving shot and killed home owner Perkins, whom they gave only seconds to respond to officers before the started shooting, firing 18 rounds

Shooting happened after Perkins exited his house at night with a flashlight, and shouted ‘hey get away from my truck,’ at at a man attempting to tow his truck

Police allege Perkins pulled a gun on a tow truck driver attempting to repossess his pickup at night Newly released footage from a neighbor’s security camera does not support the account of a gun present

Police Chief Todd Pinion, has apologized for the inaccurate police account that Perkins refused to comply when was ordered to put his gun down, before officers opened fire

Perkins’ family members say there’s no indication he’d even fallen behind on payments for the GMC truck, which is why he’d tried to stop it from being taken away.

Family’s attorney has also said the actions of the tow truck driver were illegal and he should have stood down his attempt to repossess the vehicle once there was breach

Cops also should not have been involve in a repossession, except there is a court order, which was not the case

Police announced Thursday that internal investigation into this case was completed – That investigation addresses potential policy violations only and the possibility of applying disciplinary measures.

After Perkins, 39, was shot by cops responding to a 911 call, outside his home in Decatur, Alabama on Sept. 29. This recording made by home security footage from a neighbor across the street released on Nov. 4, shows Perkins’ truck being towed as he lay dying, riddled with bullet wounds, on his own property

A private recording of events leading to the shooting of a black Alabama home owner by police, has neither exonerated cops nor explained why officers within minutes of arrival at the scene of a night time repossession confrontation shot the vehicle owner dead on his front lawn, by officers who are yet to be identified.
Meanwhile the repossession firm calmly seized the victim’s truck as he lies dying on the street ,just feet away, with no one seeming to care. 
Stephen Perkins, 39, who is black was gunned down by cops from Decatur Police Department outside his home in Decatur, Alabama, on September 29. 
The Decatur Police Department in their initial report stated that a tow truck driver had attempted to repossess Perkins pickup, when he alleged, pulled a gun on the repo man. The tow truck driver then called 911. 

Needless death: Perkins was given less than seconds to respond to officers before the started shooting, firing 18 rounds. Police allege Perkins pulled a gun on a tow truck driver attempting to repossess his pickup at night, causing the driver to call 911

Surveillance cameras captured the moment Perkins was gunned down by responding officers, who fired eighteen shots at him. The recently released video shows that Perkins was given less than seconds that night to respond to officers’ commands before they opened fire, unleashing nearly two dozen rounds.
One of the homes directly across from where Perkins lived with his young family also captured the moment he was fatally shot.
Perkins who rushed out of his home at night as a tow truck tried to take his truck, can be heard shouting: ‘Hey, put my truck down’, before police officers rush out from cover with their weapons drawn.
One of them yells at him: ‘Hey, hey! Police! Get on the ground!’ as the officers unleash a volley of bullets on him.
Before the officer even finishes, police began unloading eighteen shots towards Perkins.
In shocking show of indifference, a driver from local tow company, Allstar Recovery, drives off with the dying man’s truck as he takes his final breaths just feet away.
Perkins final words allegedly, was ‘HELP.’
The police report states that Perkins, a black man, had also pointed a gun at the officer, who reportedly fired 18 shots at the man, hitting him seven times.
A spokesperson for Perkins’ family said he was “ambushed” by police, who gave him less than a fraction of a second to comply with instructions to get on the ground before opening fire, doorbell camera video showed.
“From the immediate footage that we’re seeing, it looked like an ambush of him not even knowing who was in his yard,” family spokesperson Brenton Lipscomb told NBC News on Monday.
“They were in uniform, but it’s a very dark neighborhood. No police cars were in front of the house, they were parked down the street, hiding in neighborhoods’ yards, hiding around the house.”
Susan Capps, 62, who lives across from Perkins’ residence and one house over, complied with a state subpoena to release the footage from her security system. The outcome set the community roiling.

Footage released by police shows events of Sept. 29 when Stephen Perkins was shot on his front lawn by cops called by a tow truck driver in Decatur, Alabama. Cops who claim he had a gun on top of his flashlight, are yet to provide proof he was armed

The police report states that Perkins, a black man, had also pointed a gun at the officer, who reportedly fired 18 shots at the man, hitting him seven times.
On Nov. 4, new home security footage from a neighbor across the street emerged depicting Perkins’ truck callously being towed as he fought for his life, riddled with gunshots on his own property.
The shooting happened after Perkins exited his house at night with a flashlight, security footage showed. Police and tow driver claim Perkins had mounted a gun on the flashlight, a claim not supported by the security footage.
The clip shows Perkins lying on the ground as two people who appear to be police officers stand over him and pat him down.
In the clip, officers can be seen standing over the body of Perkins in his front lawn after gunning him down. The tow driver nonchalantly making off with Perkins’ white GMC Sierra.
Further fanning the flames of outrage is Decatur Police’s admission that they got a crucial early piece of information wrong. 
That newly released footage, which was first shared by Decatur Daily, has triggered outrage in the Alabama city, with both the repossession firm and police department blamed for what activists say was Perkins’ needless death.  

Fixated on repossession of the vehicle and having no concern for welfare of the injured, the tow driver calmly takes off with the white GMC Sierra while Perkins lies motionless on the ground 

Steve Perkins, seen [with his wife Catrela and their daughter], was shot dead by cops helping a tow truck driver repossess a vehicle from his home at Decatur, Alabama on September 2

Inexplicably the first police report claimed Perkins had been told to drop a gun he’d been holding but that he’d refused to do so. 
Police Chief Todd Pinion later changed the account and said Perkins had been ordered to ‘get on the ground’ by officers who’d identified themselves as police. 
The change in the police version has led to the public wondering whether the Decatur PD also has other crucial details wrong.  Footage after the shooting, shows officers patting Perkins down, with one officer moving from Perkins’ right side over to Perkins’ legs. Meanwhile, out of sight, an unidentified repossession officer has hooked the GMC to their truck and begins to tow it away.
As the officers continue, the headlights from the tow truck begin moving at the 30-second mark.
The vehicle turns left out of Perkin’s driveway with Perkins’ pickup truck following it. 

Steve Perkins’ white truck which was seized in controversial circumstances, was last seen stashed in the impound lot of Allstar Recovery, which has been condemned over what activists say was the Alabama father’s needless death 

It is unclear who was driving the truck, but Decatur Daily reported that Allstar Recovery is owned by Shannon Gay.
A similarly-named local business – All Star Towing & Recovery – has received abuse over Perkins’ death, but had nothing to do with the incident.

Decatur city Police Chief Todd Pinion, [photo], issued a public apology last month after the dept. was caught out giving a false description of the original events

Perkins’ family attend a revival outside Decatur, Ala., City Hall on Tuesday, Oct. 10. He was shot dead at his home by police two weeks earlier

Attorney Carl Cole told WAAY 31 last month that the truck driver should never have returned to Perkins’ home with the police. 
Cole added that police are not allowed to be involved in a car repossession unless there is a court order involved – and he alleges that there was none.
Perkins’ family also says there’s no indication he’d even fallen behind on payments for the GMC truck, which is why he’d tried to stop it from being taken away.
Cole told the outlet: ‘One, the tow truck driver is supposed to stand down if there’s any sort of breach of the peace. ‘

Decatur police recently apologized after the department was caught in the lie of inaccurately stating that officers ordered Perkins to drop his weapon and that he refused to comply. So far, no one has provided proof that Perkins had a gun

Cole continued: ‘He should have never gone back out there. And second, police are not supposed to be involved in a repossession absent of a court order.’
If there is any breach of peace during a car repossession, under Alabama law that repossession is over.
Cole added: ‘What I can say is this: they never should have gotten that far, much less towed his car away that night as he’s lying in his yard.   
‘You know I can’t imagine a greater insult to injury than that happening at that time especially considering what Alabama law says regarding: we’re not supposed to go further than this if there’s a breach of the peace. 
‘Not only did they go further with it, he’s lying in his yard while it’s happening, that’s really problematic.’

Civil rights attorney Lee Merritt flanked by member the Perkins family, speaks during a vigil for Stephen Perkins outside Decatur, Ala., City Hall.

Perkins’ family say no crime scene was set up after his death and that the only marker of what had happened was a pool of the late father’s blood. 
Neighbor Susan Capps, 62, told Decatur Daily that she did not see cops rendering first aid and that they instead appeared to be patting Perkins down as he lay dying. 
She also claims that a cop who came to her door lied and said everyone involved in the shooting was fine.  
The killing of Perkins has sparked fury in the town, with the local police department coming under intense scrutiny over his death and the action of officers. 
They have not been named. 

Perkins’ family (pictured with wife Catrela Perkins) said his truck was not in repossession, which is why he went outside to dispute the tow

Police Chief Todd Pinion apologized last month after the department gave a false description of the officers’ commands in the PD’s ‘initial rush to release information’. 
The department inaccurately said officers ordered Perkins to drop his weapon and that he refused to do so. 
Pinion said what actually happened is the officers identified themselves as ‘police’ and ordered Perkins to ‘get on the ground.’ 
He wrote: ‘I apologize for the inaccurate description of the encounter in our initial statement, and we have already taken steps to improve our public information sharing process.’ 
Pinion promised ‘transparency in providing any information we are able to share as soon as it is able to be released.’
He added: ‘There is understandably much public conversation about the shooting of Stephen Perkins. Any time a police officer uses deadly force, questions should be asked, and answers provided.’
On Thursday, the Decatur Police Department confirmed that an internal investigation into the death of Perkins had been completed. 
Chief Pinion said: ‘Today, our department’s internal investigation into this case was completed. That investigation addresses potential policy violations only.
‘If I find department policy was violated and discipline is warranted, this would be presented to the Office of the Mayor for a determination hearing. 
‘At that hearing, the Mayor would hear the facts of the case and decide if discipline is warranted and to what extent.’

Protests have taken place daily in the north Alabama city since the shooting

People march along Lee Street in downtown Decatur in early October during a protest against the killing of Steve Perkins by police a week earlier

As a result of the police response, protests had been happening daily in the north city, with hundreds of people gathering outside of Decatur City Hall.
‘The thing that has been consistent is looking for answers. We understand that. That is something everyone wants and they want answers now. Unfortunately, we don’t have control of that,’ Decatur Mayor Tab Bowling previously told news outlets.
Perkins’ family had previously said that his truck was not in repossession, which is why he was disputing the tow. 
Rodney Gordon, president of the Morgan County branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People [NAACP], said video from the night of his death shows police weren’t following the right procedures: ‘If you knock on the door as a police officer, we don’t ever have this conversation. If you pull up to the house with the lights on, I don’t come outside with a gun. 
‘If you come knock on my door and identify yourself as a police officer, I don’t come to the door with a gun. This whole thing could have been totally avoided. According to the film — and it ain’t lying — it was an ambush,’ Gordon said.
A fundraiser launched to help the family of Perkins, who had described him as a ‘devoted husband, gym enthusiast, and a hardworking man’,  has raised $72,910 of the $100,000 goal. 

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