Betty Shelby, the Tulsa Police Officer who shot one Terence Crutcher, to death on Friday has been charged with first-degree manslaughter.
Shelby fatally shot 40-year-old Crutcher after his SUV stopped in a roadway. Crutcher’s car stalled on the way to a community college where he was taking a class. Helicopter and dashboard camera footage show that Crutcher was walking away from Shelby toward his car with his hands raised before several officers surrounded him. Police say one officer tasered Crutcher, and then Shelby shot him.
According to the Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler, “We reviewed the facts of the allegations. It is our responsibility to determine if the filing of a criminal charge is justified under the law.”
“Although she is charged, she is presumed innocent until a judge or jury determines otherwise. I don’t know why things happen in this world the way they do,” Kunzweiler added.
An affidavit by an investigator with the Tulsa County District Attorney’s Office said that Shelby reacted “unreasonably by escalating the situation from a confrontation” with Crutcher. It said that Shelby became “emotionally involved” to the point that she overreacted, adding that she was “not able to see any weapons or bulges indicating a weapon was present.”