Police say that Crutcher then failed to follow orders — leading officer Betty Shelby to fire her weapon and officer Tyler Turnbough to use his Taser on Crutcher.
One possible explanation for the racial disparities: Police tend to patrol high-crime neighborhoods, which are disproportionately black.
A 2015 study by researcher Cody Ross found, "There is no relationship between county-level racial bias in police shootings and crime rates (even race-specific crime rates), meaning that the racial bias observed in police shootings in this data set is not explainable as a response to local-level crime rates." That suggests something else — such as, potentially, racial bias — is going on.
But, as Klinger said, "they basically say that the job of a cop is to protect people from violence, and if you’ve got a violent person who’s fleeing, you can shoot them to stop their flight." The key to both of the legal standards — defense of life and fleeing a violent felony — is that it doesn’t matter whether there is an actual threat when force is used.
They had to demonstrate that their actions were "objectively reasonable," given the circumstances and compared to what other police officers might do.