Two officers were seeking Malcolm Johnson for an unrelated shooting when he was killed in March 2021. The officers approached Johnson with their guns drawn in a convenience store. Surveillance video shows officers grabbed Johnson and restrained him to the ground.
At one point during the encounter, one officer was shot. The wounded officer went on to shoot Johnson twice in the head, according to police.
On Monday (March 13), St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell’s office announced that the officer wouldn't face charges for the shooting following an investigation by the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
“Given the review of all the evidence, there is insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the officer who shot Malcolm Johnson was not acting in lawful self-defense or defense of others under Missouri law,” Bell’s office said in a statement.
The move was criticized by civil rights groups and community members who believe Johnson's death was an "execution."
“This case is not only tragic but also a clear example of how KCPD gets away with murder covers it up, and claims it is justice. This is not justice,” the organization Decarcerate Kansas City wrote on Twitter.
Khadijah Hardaway, a spokeswoman for Johnson's family, said they are seeking a federal investigation after Bell's office declined to pursue charges.
“We’re just asking for transparency and justice for the Malcolm Johnson family,” Hardaway said.
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