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Video |  Police officers fired 96 times into the car of a suspect who was not wearing a seat belt

Video | Police officers fired 96 times into the car of a suspect who was not wearing a seat belt

Chicago police released footage of a deadly raid last month in which five officers fired as many as 96 shots into a car that initially stopped because the driver wasn't wearing his belt. The driver of the vehicle involved was killed during the shooting.

On March 21, Dexter Reed, 26, was driving in the Humboldt Park area when plainclothes police officers in an unmarked car stopped him because he appeared to not be wearing a seat belt.

The person, who appears to be on guard, lowers and then raises his window despite police asking him to keep it open. The officers then raise their voices and try to open his door, while repeatedly asking him to open it.

Image from CNN

According to the police report, the suspect then opened fire, hitting an officer in the forearm, leading to a violent exchange of gunfire. The officers fired at the car 96 times in only about forty seconds.

In footage from a police camera, Dexter Reed can be seen getting out of his car, unarmed. However, a number of police officers continued to shoot in his direction. The suspect was then handcuffed and arrested, but the man quickly died of his wounds.

A firearm was later found in the front passenger seat.

Excessive or justified force?

After seeing images of this intervention, Mr Reid's family believes the police used excessive force.

“How many times did they shoot him? He was already dead, why did you keep shooting him like that? They killed my son and they killed me too,” said the young man’s mother, Nicole Banks.

No video has yet been released that clearly shows that the suspect was the one who fired first.

“Our task will be, based on all the evidence, to determine whether the methods used by the police officers were excessive within the meaning of the law,” State Attorney Kim Foxx said. It plans to file criminal charges against the police officers involved in this event.

Image from CNN

For attorney Stephen Hart, something fishy is going on.

He asserts: “There is a problem in this city when five tactical officers get out of an unmarked vehicle and point their weapons at a young man who was not wearing a seat belt.”

Image from CNN

The director of the Civilian Office of Police Accountability in Chicago questions the motives behind this intervention and the story the officers told.