Police officers shot an unarmed black man in Troy, New York on Tuesday evening and the disturbing event was caught on camera.
According to witnesses, 22-year-old Dahmeek McDonald was shot twice in the head while in his car by a Troy police officer. Police denied that he was shot in his head and claimed he was shot twice in the torso, then they later changed it and said he was shot once in the shoulder and grazed once on the head.
The tragic incident started when police officers stopped a car with two passengers, one of whom was the victim. Police confronted McDonald for an alleged parole violation. They then shot him on his face while he was sitting in his car at about 6:40 p.m. Officers then pulled him out as he was bleeding and handcuffed him.
While on the floor, he can be seen writhing in pain and begging for help as officers kept trying to keep him down.
"Why'd you all shoot me? Why'd you all shoot me?" Dahmeek kept asking police repeatedly.
At another point, he said "I can't breathe. I'm about to die. They shot me in the head."
Later, he's heard begging for an ambulance, saying: "I need somebody to please get an ambulance for me."
Blood covered his face and friends can be heard challenging the police, asking why they shot at him when he was unarmed. A nurse can also be seen in the video asking the cops to call an ambulance and directing the wounded man to breathe, lie on his stomach and keep talking so he doesn't pass out.
McDonald was later taken to the hospital but his condition is not known at the moment. An initial online report, which quoted a woman who said she witnessed the incident, stated he was dead. Police soon clarified that he had been wounded and was taken to Albany Medical Center Hospital where detectives were interviewing him.
At noon on Wednesday, dozens of protesters marched from the scene of the shooting to Troy's City Hall, escorted by police. When they arrived, protesters chanted for Troy Police Chief John Tedesco's removal and listened to McDonald's uncle, James "Messiah" Cooper, speak.
"Before we die on our knees, we will fight on our feet," Cooper said, just before he and other family members were led inside to meet with Mayor Patrick Madden. The group reemerged about an hour later.
"We have to give them time," Cooper told an angry crowd, adding he and his family felt confident the mayor would hold the officer "accountable if need be."
Tedesco said his department and Rensselaer County District Attorney Joel Abelove will investigate the shooting.