Philando Castile shooting

Screengrab via aldotcom/YouTube

Police dashcam footage reveals moments before Philando Castile died

The officer who shot him was acquitted last week.


Samantha Grasso


Dashboard camera footage of the police shooting of Philando Castile has been released, just days after the officer who shot him was acquitted of all charges.

Last July, the aftermath of Castlie’s shooting was livestreamed on Facebook by his girlfriend Diamond Reynolds. However, few outside the jurors in Officer Jeranimo Yanez’s manslaughter case had witnessed this footage from the moments before the shooting, the New York Times reported.

In the video, Yanez can be seen walking up to Castile’s car, pulled over to the side of the road. Yanez said he had pulled Castile over for a broken tail light, then asks for proof of insurance and driver’s license. Castile hands over the insurance document, just before the interaction quickly devolves into violence.

“Sir, I have to tell you I do have a firearm on me,” Castile, who had a permit to carry a gun, told the officer.

“OK, don’t reach for it, then,” Yanez responded. He cuts off Castile’s interjection, his voice raising with, “Don’t pull it out!”

“I’m not pulling it out,” Castile replies. Reynolds, who sat in the passenger seat with her daughter in the back, assures the officer she’s not reaching for his firearm.

Once again, Yanez yells, “Don’t pull it out!” before firing seven shots into Castile.

Though damning, the video doesn’t show what’s happening inside the car and can’t verify that Castile had reached for his gun as Yanez’s lawyers argued, nor that he was instead reaching for his wallet to get him his ID, as Reynolds had claimed.

In November, Yanez was charged with second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts for intentionally discharging a gun. On Friday, after five days of deliberation by the jury, he was acquitted. Yanez is believed to be the first officer charged in an on-duty fatal shooting in Minnesota history.

On Monday night, Daily Show host Trevor Noah discussed the tragedy of Castile’s death, shrouded in the question, “What can black people do to not get shot?” The bar is always moving, Noah monologued in a somber tone, to justify why black Americans are brutalized by police—they were wearing a hoodie, or running away from cops, or approaching cops.

“At some point, you realize there’s no real answer,” Noah said.

He then continued by making a point of how the National Rifle Association has conveniently stayed silent on Castile’s death despite how the circumstances appeal to the core of their morals: Castile was killed for having a firearm, in the company of his family, despite being a registered gun owner.

“It’s interesting how the people who define themselves by one fundamental American right, the right to bear arms, show that once race is involved, the only right that they believe in is their right to remain silent,” Noah concluded.

Watch Noah’s segment on Castile’s death below:

The Daily Dot