Police Shoot and Kill Black Man for Dressing Like Anime Character

darrien hunt anime samurai

A warning to black men out there.  If you decide you want to dress up like your favorite anime character, expect to get shot in the back by police.  Police in Utah have apparently gunned down a black man because he decided to dress like his favorite character from anime Samurai Champloo.

Here we go again.  According to the family and attorney of Darrien Hunt, he was running away from police officers when they pulled their guns and shot him in the back.  An independent autopsy proves he was shot in the back, according to attorneys working the case.

The police tell a different story.  According to prosecutors involved in the case, 22-year-old Darrien Hunt lunged at the police with his ‘samurai-type sword’ mastery.  The police had no choice but to shoot and kill him.

The mother of Darrien Hunt is quoted as saying, “They killed my son because he’s black.  No white boy with a little sword would they shoot while he’s running away.”

{adinserter 2}The Utah AG office reports there is no indication that race played a role in the incident, but did confirm preliminary evidence suggesting Hunt brandished the sword at the officers, causing them to respond with force.

But the family’s attorney, Randall Edwards, is saying not so fast.  How can a person both masterfully wield a samurai sword against the police and have multiple gunshot wounds to the back, especially with autopsy results showing he was running away as the bullets struck him down?

Eyewitnesses at the scene seem to agree with Edwards.  The officer’s report ‘seems to be inaccurate, based on witnesses who saw him running from police officers and our independent autopsy.”

Sources mention that Hunt had a prior criminal record for getting arrested after getting into a public scuffle with a sibling, an event that may have a rowdy fraternity or sports fans being told to ‘go home’ and not arrested.

Edwards goes on, “We don’t know exactly what happened, but the fact that a black kid with an Afro was shot while walking down the street by two white officers in a city that is 96% white is concerning,”  He continued,  “There are serious questions as to why officers were questioning him and the use of force in this situation.”

The sword in question was three feet long and according to Hunt’s mother, he purchased the cheap replica at a local Asian gift shop.  According to her the sword ‘could not actually cut anything.”


[/pullquote_right]The shooting happened near several businesses, including a Panda Express that was apparently closed at the time.  When first told about where everything took place, she offered, “I believe that maybe my son thought, ‘Maybe I’ll try to get a job at Panda, maybe this sword will impress them.'”

While some have speculated that race played a role in the shooting deaths of Hunt and Brown, there’s one key difference between the two cases: Brown was unarmed when he was shot, and Hunt was reportedly carrying a 3-foot sword around a Panda Express restaurant and other businesses.

“I believe that maybe my son thought, ‘Maybe I’ll try to get a job at Panda, maybe this sword will impress them,’ ” Susan Hunt told KSL.

Panda Restaurant Group spokesman Thien Ho said the Saratoga Springs location was closed at the time of the shooting.

While race is a tempting thing to look at in this case, the bigger issue is the use of deadly force by any officer or person in America.  Since officers are public servants, many argue that their actions must be subject to review by the public.  Any armed discharge of a weapon in a public or private area by a public agent should be subject to scrutiny of the public.

That is to say, this case is more proof of why officers should be required to wear cameras that record their interactions.

It is perfectly possible that the officers were well justified in their use of deadly force.  If an officer or other person is in immediate danger of major harm or death, or the only way to stop a convicted felon from escaping to the public is a firearm, officers tend to be in the clear for using their weapons as needed.

But if you’re going after a young-man whose carrying a cheap, knock-off sword around town, just like anyone heading off to Renfest or a Anime Convention may do, then public scrutiny will take place.  And it’s during this process of scrutiny that many ugly things are said, at homes and in media, and by politicians, and that is where we see cultural divisions increased.

It is only socially responsible, for the sake of America, to start requiring all police officers to wear a camera.  Problem solved.  If we can spend trillions of dollars on foreign wars, than surely we can spend the smaller fraction of money to ensure our cops can be ensured they won’t be accused of unfair profiling or murder, citizens have another degree of assurance that cops won’t violate their civil rights or murder them, and the public doesn’t have to air out its ugly, underlying race issues that won’t do anything but tear us apart as media feasts on the ‘juicy, baiting’ headlines.

What do you think?

Written by Alannah Arrington

Alannah Damara Arrington serves as the Senior Editor for Big American News Media's Grabnews Network International (GNI) and Weekend Recap. She joined the network in 2003 and now serves on the board of media directors.


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