Skip to comments.Tensions High After Tampa Police Fatally Shoot Teen
Posted on 07/23/2012 12:34:21 PM PDT by Iron Munro
Members of a local Black Panther group are planning a protest today after Tampa police shot and killed an armed teenager Sunday night in a Tampa Heights apartment complex.
The St. Petersburg/Tampa New Black Panther Party says it expects 200 protesters to attend a rally at 9 a.m. at the Tampa Police Department headquarters on North 22nd Street.
The protest is in response to the shooting death of Javon Neal, 16, who police say ran from police up a stairwell then whirled around brandishing a pistol grip, pump-action shotgun before police shot him.
The shooting ignited anger among the apartment complex residents and neighbors, and scores of people milled about Columbus Drive in front of the Central Court Apartments, at 2510 Central Ave., cat-calling police and nearly disrupting a news conference Sunday night.
Neal lived in the complex and was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, said Tampa police spokeswoman Laura McElroy.
A man was shot at the complex about 4 p.m. and taken to the hospital, but police were still trying to determine if Neal had any connection to that shooting, McElroy said.
When police got a call of another shooting in progress at 7:21 p.m., two officers with a special unit that focuses on violent offenders responded.
The officers spotted someone who matched the description given in the 911 call and followed him to the south side of the complex, yelling for him to stop, McElroy said. But Neal kept going and ran up the three flights on an outside staircase, stopped on the third-floor landing and began pulling something out of his pant leg, she said.
The officers reached the third floor when Neal turned around, holding the shotgun in his hands.
"There was no doubt he was armed with a very dangerous weapon," McElroy said.
The gunman didn't fire, but police did. Neal was hit at least once, but McElroy didn't know how many shots the officers fired.
McElroy identified the officers as Gregory Pryor, 36, who has been with the department for five years, and Shannon Murphy, 35, a nine-year veteran of the force.
Both have been placed on administrative leave with pay until the investigation is completed, which is standard operating procedure.
Neither officer was injured.
When the officers showed up Sunday evening to investigate the shooting, there was a large birthday party going on in the apartment complex's courtyard, said Robert Fulton, who said he saw Neal get shot and that he knew the teen.
Fulton said the officers fired on the teen too quickly and disputed the police department's account that Neal was armed.
"I saw the young man," Fulton said. "He had a hoodie on, and he reached into his pocket for something, and the police fired."
The officers fired numerous times from about 10 feet away, Fulton said.
"They acted too quickly," he said.
McElroy held a news conference on Columbus Drive, around 8:30 p.m. while police cruisers with lights on lined the brick street from Jefferson Street almost to Central Avenue, splashing the street's modest older homes with blue and red strobes. A crowd gathered behind the news reporters and shouted over McElroy when she gave the police's version of what happened.
"That's a lie," yelled one woman, when McElroy said the teen was armed.
"God saw what happened," another woman shouted, "and I bet he is going to get justice."
By 10 p.m., the crowd had begun to disperse, and police began pulling down the yellow crime scene tape.
But the issue is not over, said Ali Muhammad, with the New Black Panther Party. He called for a rally in front of police headquarters in Tampa this morning, protesting police violence and excessive use of force.
Sunday night, Muhammad urged peace on Columbus Avenue.
"We are offering support for the community, and to make sure everything stays calm, cool and collected," he said. "There are a lot of people out here who are outraged about this."
McElroy said the shooting was not racial, that officers were doing their jobs in detaining a suspect in a shooting. Neal is black and McElroy said one of the officers is black.
"Race did not play into the equation," she said.
Gomer with homemade name pulls riot shotgun on police.
Police shoot Gomer.
Black Panthers say police shot too fast.
Well - they could have just offered to let him go if he didn't shoot them.
Zimmerman made them do it.
What do you expect? They missed their chance to gin up a riot over St. Travon Martin. Here’s another opportunity.
... because it gets really cold in Tampa, Florida in July.
Did he have any Skillets or IT?
Were either of the officers “white hispanics”? Because they are the worst kind of racists, especially the one’s with African-Peruvian ancestors, those are even worse!
“Well - they could have just offered to let him go if he didn’t shoot them.”
They should have used Holder’s directive for border patrol agents and run away and hid themselves.
What NOT to name your baby:
Trayvon, Jayvon, etc.
Somewhere over the Skittle Rainbow ...
“Javon? Meet Travon”
“Travon? Meet Javon”
You two poor dumb asses.
I can’t believe they named the cops in the story. That is stupid.
If they don’t want cops in their neighborhoods, fine. No more responses to any 911 calls from their area. How does that sound?
When Hussein loses on Novemember 6th, cities like Tampa will BURN, and blood will run in the streets. Be ready to defend your family.
> “He had a hoodie on, and he reached into his pocket for something, and the police fired.”
Dang, but that sounds uncannily like the Zimmerman case. - But now it is LEO who were the shooters. Hmmm.
No foaming at the mouth State Attorney to push her agenda...
So which is it? Was he armed or not?
One of these statements is an outright lie - There is no way you can confuse a pulling a freakin shotgun on LEO in broad daylight with putting your hand in a pocket.
Obviously the cops ‘acted stupidly’ in gunning down the Innocent yute.
“...No more responses to any 911 calls from their area...”
I believe that is exactly what the Black Panthers want: a place they control.
Perhaps it should be standard practice for the police (who likely all have camera phones these days) to photograph the perp with his gun from multiple angles. Then the PD could preemptively release the pics to all the news media and put it up on the PD web site.
The Late Javon Neal
Another Trayvon, Javon, Leebon, Kieron, Shayon, ...