These days, it can be scary to wake up in the morning and scroll down your social media timelines. You just never know what you’ll find. This morning, Charles Kinsey was the name on everyone’s lips.
Kinsey, a therapist in Miami, was working with a confused autistic patient who ran away from a group home. His patient was carrying a toy truck. Kinsey was attempting to return his patient to the group home when police confronted the two men. In an attempt to protect himself from the officers, Kinsey laid down on his back and lifted his hands into the air. He was yelling at the officers trying to explain to them that he was unarmed, a behavior therapist and was working with the man who only had a toy truck.
He told the officers that there was no need for firearms.
But despite all of that, Kinsey said a North Miami officer still shot him.
“I’m like this right here (Charles explains holding his hands up.) When he shot me it was so surprising, it was like a mosquito bite. And when he hit me, I’m like ‘I still got my hands in the air.’ I say you know, ‘I just got shot.’ And I said, ‘Sir, why did you shoot me? And his words to me, ‘I don’t know.’”
The police allege the incident started when someone called officers reporting a man walking around with a gun, threatening suicide.
Kinsey said he was more concerned for his patient than for himself. He believed that since he had his hands up, he would be safe.
“I’m like as long as I got my hands up, they’re not going to shoot me. This is what I’m thinking. Wow was I wrong.”
But Kinsey said that it was what police did afterward that upset him the most.
“They got like one, two, three sets of handcuffs, they cuffed my hands and they flipped me over. I’m laying on the concrete, I’m bleeding.”
From the video of the incident, when police handcuffed him, there was no ambulance or emergency personnel on site.
Kinsey’s wife Joyce said that she’s so grateful her husband is alive and able to tell his story.
That, to me, is a huge part of the take away from this story. Most of the times with these incidences of police brutality, shootings and killings, the victim is no longer able to share their side. And as authorities in the community, the police officer’s story is regarded as the true one.
It’ll be interesting to see what happens to Charles and the North Miami police department as a result of this shooting. So far, while there have been little details released, the police department did say that this officer has been placed on administrative leave.