Unarmed & Black: Keith Childress, Jr. remembered, and the growing list of loved ones left behind after police violence

by Center for Community Change | May 29, 2018 4:00 am

Family, friends and supporters of police violence victim Keith Childress, Jr. gather outside Excalibur Hotel & Casino on the Las Vegas Strip to demand justice for his murder. His mother, Jacqueline Lawrence, center, lives in Phoenix, Arizona, which makes advocating for her son difficult. (Las Vegas, Nev., June 5, 2016.)
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On December 31, 2015, Keith Childress, Jr., 23, father of three, was visiting Las Vegas for the New Year’s holiday. He was walking in a private neighborhood when he was shot five times in broad daylight by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police. Police were acting on a sham call from U.S. Marshals that Childress was an armed and dangerous fugitive wanted for attempted murder.  Off of this false information, the police pursued Childress and apprehended him. While Childress did have an open court case, he was neither armed and dangerous nor wanted for attempted murder. Within seconds of making contact, Childress was shot several times. The police claim they thought he was armed, but Childress only had his cell phone in his hand. After police shot him, the K-9 unit released dogs onto Childress, tearing up his backside.  The surrounding area where the police shot Childress was badly damaged. The garage door of the driveway where Childress fell needed to be replaced and several parked cars endured collateral damage. To this day, bullet holes can be seen on the side of the house. While no criminal charges were filed, the mother of Childress, Jacqueline Lawrence, has filed a civil lawsuit against the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police for his wrongful death.


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