Yep, We Need Dashcams

This video will blow your mind.

On the plus side, the officer in question was fired from the South Carolina Highway Patrol and has now been charged with aggravated assault. But here’s the story (with video). White Highway Patrol officer stops a black man for a seat belt violation outside Columbia, SC. The state trooper Sean Groubert, 31, asks the driver for his license. The driver, Levar Jones, reaches into the car to retrieve his license – at which point Groubert screams “get out of the car” and proceeds to unload four or five rounds from his pistol into Jones at close to point blank range.

Dashcam video after the jump …

As you can see, the shooting is followed by a macabre and surreal dialog between Groubert and Jones in which Jones asks Groubert why he shot him. Jones seems genuinely dumbfounded, in addition to (one presumes) a mixture of fear, shock and anger. Groubert comes off not so much as consciously malevolent as bumbling and almost ridiculous – a frightening example of someone who should not be a cop or have a firearm. (Groubert’s casefile has a series of citizen complaints against him.)

Would Groubert have lost his badge and be facing charges had there not been a dashcam video revealing the reality of what happened? Let’s put that down as a rhetorical question.

Jones survived the attack and is now out of the hospital and recuperating.

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