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Family of Willie McCoy Says He Was Asleep When He Was Shot By Police

His family is calling for police body camera footage to be released to the public.

Family of Willie McCoy Says He Was Asleep When He Was Shot By Police
(Photo credit: Shutterstock)

Willie McCoy, 20, was fatally shot by police on Feb. 28 in Vallejo, California. On Thursday, McCoy’s family said video footage from an officer’s body camera suggests the aspiring rapper was asleep at the time of the shooting, reports NBC.

Vallejo police were called to a local Taco Bell after employees reported a man “slumped over” with a handgun in his lap. Police say McCoy “quickly” moved his hands downward when they ordered various commands. Six officers, said to be in fear for their lives, fired numerous rounds into his car. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

A fully loaded .40 caliber semiautomatic handgun, which had been reported stolen from Oregon, was recovered during an investigation into the shooting, authorities told NBC.

McCoy’s family said the officers’ statements showcase a different scenario than the one they witnessed through body camera footage taken that night. They called for the video to be released to the public.

“It seems like an execution,” David Harrison, McCoy’s cousin, said Wednesday. “It looks like my baby cousin was executed by a firing squad.”

“What we saw was a sleeping man,” Harrison continued. “He reaches with his right arm to his left shoulder, scratching. He wasn’t awake. There wasn’t enough time for him to wake up.”

The video footage was viewed by three family members, including Harrison, who watched the footage for about 11.5 hours.

Harrison said that while he couldn’t see his cousin’s face in the footage, the 20-year-old never had an opportunity to comply with officers’ commands. “It was like almost instantaneous. I can’t tell you how many seconds, but if I was to estimate, from what I’ve seen, maybe from a couple of seconds.

“I don’t think he even had time to react,” Harrison added. “If you’re just waking up from sleep, you don’t know what you have around you and who’s talking to you.”

Attorneys for McCoy’s family said he was hit about 25 times in the face, throat and upper body.

The Vallejo Police Department has reportedly launched an investigation to determine whether excessive use of force was demonstrated in the shooting. Authorities are withholding an autopsy and toxicology during the inquiry.

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