Attorney General Bill Barr said Wednesday that Jacob Blake was committing a felony and armed when a police officer in Kenosha, Wisconsin shot him seven times in the back.
Barr was doing an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer when he made the claims about Blake, without citing the specific felony Blake was allegedly committing.
Initially, the attorney general said he was “not going to talk about the Blake case” because it was separate from the killing of George Floyd, who died after an officer kneeled on his neck in Minneapolis.
“Floyd was already subdued, incapacitated in handcuffs and was not armed,” Barr said. “In the Jacob case, he was in the midst of committing a felony and he was armed.”
Blitzer pointed out that in both police and the Blake family’s version of events, cops did not know there was a knife until after the shooting.
“His family says he wasn’t armed. There may have been a knife in the car,” Blitzer said, “but he wasn’t armed when he was shot.”
When pressed for more specifics, Barr replied: “I’ve stated what I believe to be the difference.”
Attorneys for Blake, who is paralyzed and recovering in the hospital, said that Barr was simply “misinformed” on the facts of the case.
“AG Barr is misinformed. Police were aggressors from start to finish,” the lawyer, Ben Crump, said in a statement.
“There was never justification for deadly force. Innocent bystanders were in line of fire when he shot 7 times into Jacob’s back. At all material times, his back was to them. He never posed an imminent threat.”
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