Melanie Stetson Freeman
New footage shows the scared four-year-old pleading with her mother to remain calm after the shooting.
The acquittal of the police officer in the murder of Philando Castile indicates the trial maybe over. But new police footage of the moments immediately following the shooting provides insight into how terrifying the situation was for those involved.
Especially for the four-year-old daughter of Castile’s fiance, who struggled with how to take in the fatal shooting.
Officer Jeronimo Yanez killed Castile in his car last year while both mother and daughter were sitting in the vehicle. Reynolds then live streamed the aftermath on Facebook Live.
Both Diamond Reynolds, who had been handcuffed, and her daughter were placed in the back of a police car. You can see the four-year-old trying to calm down her distraught mother, who at times becomes overwhelmed with emotions.
“I can keep you safe,” the daughter said, placing her hands on Reynold’s neck and face. “It’s OK. I’m right here with you.”
Other moments saw the child trying, in her own way, to get control of the situation by telling her mother how to act to avoid being shot.
“Mom, please stop cussing and screaming,“ her daughter said, ”I don’t want you to get shooted.”
Reynolds replied, ”OK. Give me a kiss.“
The child soon starts crying. And when Reynolds says she wants to take her handcuffs off, the girl starts crying— fearing that her mother will get shot if the cuffs are removed.
“They’re not going to shoot me, ok?” she comforts the child. “I’m already in cuffs.”
This is beyond heartbreaking. Our prayers are with the family.
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