7 Painful Facts About Alton Stering That The Media Won't Tell You

A black man lost his life in a police killing on Tuesday. His name was Alton Sterling.

Sterling, 37, was shot multiple times in the chest and back by cops outside of a convenience store in Baton Rouge, Louisiana where he frequently sold CDs. He died moments after and a witness caught the shooting on camera.

Sterling joins the extensive list of black men and women who have died at the hands of cops. The aftermath of each tragedy is emotionally draining as we mourn the loss of a life violently taken by the police, and as we reflect on how painfully familiar each killing becomes.

But we can’t let slain names on a list become just names, we must remember each individual’s legacy in order to demand that black lives do matter.

Here’s what we should all know about Alton Sterling:

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    An Officer Is Heard Saying ‘He’s Got a Gun!’

    Two Baton Rouge Police officers, Blane Salamoni and Howie Lake, were responding to a “disturbance call from a complainant who stated that a black male who was selling music cd’s and wearing a red shirt threatened him with a gun,” police spokesman Corporal L’Jean Mckneely Jr. said in a statement.

    Mckneely said an “altercation between Sterling and the officers ensued. Sterling was shot during the altercation and died at the scene.”

    The altercation was caught on cell phone video by a bystander.

    The brief video, which you can watch above, shows the end of the incident. In the video, an officer can be heard yelling “get on the ground,” out of the view of the cell phone camera. As the camera pans up, an officer is seen charging at Alton Sterling, grabbing him and tackling him into the hood of a car and then down to the pavement.

    Another officer can then be seen kneeling on Sterling. After a few seconds one of the officers yells, “He’s got a gun!” The officer seen in the video kneeling on Sterling draws his weapon and one of them says, “if you f*cking move, I swear to God!”

    One of the officers then says something somewhat unintelligible, that appears to be, “… he’s going for the Taser!”

    Two shots can then be heard and the bystander drops the cell phone. Three more shots are then fired after a brief pause.

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