The Kenosha Professional Police Association, the union representing police officers in Kenosha, Wisconsin, released what they called “the actual and undisputed” account of the events that preceded the shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man who was shot by officers multiple times on Sunday, CNN and NPR report.
The account says Blake had a knife and “forcefully fought” the officers trying to arrest him, putting one in a headlock. The statement also said the officers failed to subdue Blake after twice shooting tasers at him. The union said “most” narratives about the incident are either inaccurate or “purely fictional” and that a statement released by the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation, which is leading the investigation into the shooting, is “riddled with incomplete information,” NPR reports.
Blake’s uncle, Justin Blake, said the union’s version was “garbage” and his nephew didn’t have a weapon (per CNN, state investigators said a knife was found on the driver’s side floorboard of his vehicle), while legal defense argued Blake was not an “imminent threat” to the officers who “were essentially beating him.” Raysean White, a witness who recorded a brief video of the incident, told CNN that Blake did not pose a threat and it was actually the officers who put Blake in a headlock while one “punched him in the ribs.”
Blake survived the shooting, but is paralyzed from the waist down. His attorneys said Friday that he is no longer shackled to his hospital bed after his father revealed that had been the case because of an outstanding arrest warrant for three domestic abuse-related charges even though Blake was unable to walk and has been heavily medicated. Read more at CNN and NPR. Tim O’Donnell