Tony McDade, a Black trans man was killed by Tallahassee, Florida, police on Wednesday morning, following an alleged stabbing incident in which the victim was involved.
According to the Tallahassee Democrat, McDade, 38, posted to Facebook Live before the alleged stabbing, promising revenge on a group of men who attacked him the day before.
The man who died in the stabbing has not been identified.
Police are reviewing social media videos and other documents as part of their investigation.
According to the Democrat, there have been stories spread across the apartment complex where McDade was shot that he was unarmed and did not resist before the shooting. However, Police Chief Lawrence Revell claimed that McDade had a gun and pointed it at the officer, prompting the use of deadly force.
“The suspect was in possession of a handgun, and the bloody knife was found at the scene of the stabbing,” Revell said.
The officer involved in the shooting, who has not been identified, is White, witnesses claimed.
Clifford Butler, one of the witnesses who lived in the Leon Arms apartment complex where McDade was shot, told WFSU that he never heard the officer give any warning before shooting.
“I walked down this way, as soon as I get around this curve, I just hear shots,” Butler told WFSU. “I see [the person] right behind the tree, but I see for him [the officer] just jump out the car, swing the door open and just start shooting.”
“I never heard ‘Get down, freeze, I’m an officer’—nothing. I just heard gunshots,” Butler added.
Revell said that preliminary findings into the shooting show that “the officer acted in accordance with their training.”
“I would say in normal circumstances, and again not the specifics of this case, but if an officer is confronted with someone pointing a gun at them, but in those type of situations, there’s obviously not time to shout ‘put the gun down, put the gun down’ type of things—you’re defending your life at that point,” Revell said.
There is an investigation into the officer-involved shooting of McDade, as well as the stabbing death, Revell noted.
The chief told WFSU that he did not know if body camera footage was taken, but even then it would not be made public until after a grand jury hearing, the news station notes. The officer who shot McDade is currently on paid administrative leave pending the grand jury’s decision on the case.
Still, the community is demanding justice for McDade, with about 20 or 30 people gathering in the area where he was shot with posters reading “Black lives matter” and “Justice for Tony.”
A change.org petition calling for justice for McDade has also been signed by more than 50,000 people.