Harith Augustus, a 37 year old Chicago man, was shot and killed by Chicago Police officers on Saturday night on Chicago’s south side after a confrontation outside of a barbershop where he worked.
Chicago Police have released body cam footage of the shooting that has sparked two consecutive days of unrest in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood.
Augustus was shot by officers at around 5:30 pm on Saturday outside of a barbershop on E. 71st street where he worked for years. The police video shows two officers approaching Augustus, who appears to be wearing a gun holster. In the video, a police officer appears to attempt to grab Augustus’ wrist and Augustus pulls his hand away and begins to try escaping.
The video shows about four Chicago Police Officers surrounding Augustus as he’s trying to escape. He pulls his hands and arms away from them. In the video, Augustus appears to have a gun in the holster on his waist. As he escapes from the grasps of the officers, Augustus becomes partially obscured from sight in the video. At that point he is shot.
Augustus was pronounced dead at Jackson Park Hospital approximately twenty minutes later.
Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said that foot patrol officers had initially approached Augustus because he was “exhibiting characteristics of an armed person.”
“He looked like he may have something on him,” Guglielmi said in a statement. “They go to question him, and at that point a confrontation ensues and he is shot.”
Antoine Howell, a friend of Augustus’, described Augustus as being quiet and soft spoken. He said that Augustus rarely engaged in conversation with anyone and for the most part kept to himself. Howell said Augustus had declined an invitation to attend a party later Saturday night and that Augustus viewed the people around the barbershop as being his family.
On Sunday night, demonstrators again gathered at the scene of the shooting to protest against what community activists in Chicago have called a racist, unconstitutional police department.