While his girlfriend and her seven-year-old daughter looked on, Philando Castile, a 32-year-old man who lived in Minnesota, was shot and killed by police in the Falcon Heights suburb of St. Paul Wednesday.
Castile’s girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, began streaming the incident on Facebook Live as her boyfried slumped next to her, his white T-shirt covered in blood.
Castile’s death by cop comes just days after Alton Sterling was gunned down by officers in New Orleans.
At a press conference Thursday, Castile’s girlfriend recounts with emotional detail the hours after her boyfriend died in front of her eyes.
“They took me to jail,” Reynolds said. “They didn’t feed us. They didn’t give us water. They took everything from me. They put me in a room and separated me from my child. They treated me like a prisoner. They treated me like I did this to me, and I didn’t, they did this to us.”
On Wednesday night, Castile and his girlfriend were pulled over for a broken tail light.
When Castile informed the officer he was licensed to carry, the officer ordered him not to move. According to Reynolds, “As he was putting his hands back up, the officer shot him in the arm four or five times.”
The officer says in the video: “I told him not to reach for it. I told him to get his hand out.”
Castile, who did not have a criminal record, died at the hospital forty minutes after the shooting. Reynolds said it wasn’t until 3:00 am that officers informed her that her boyfriend passed away.
For more than ten years, Castile, known as Phil, worked at J.J. Hill Montessori School in St.Paul as a cafeteria supervisor.
“Kids loved him, he was smart, overqualified. He was quiet, respectful and kind,” a co-worker said.
Several hours after her son was pronounced dead, Valerie Castile and her daughter appeared from the HCMC emergency room into the waiting room where friends and family comforted them. “They killed my son”, Valerie Castile, the man’s mother, said while crying. “They took a good man, a hard-working man; he worked since he was 18 years old.”
St. Anthony police, the agency for whom the involved officer serves, released a statement: “A handgun was recovered from the scene,” it read with little other information. The investigation will be led by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.