DC police release body-cam footage of shooting aftermath

WASHINGTON — D.C. officials on Tuesday released footage from a body-worn camera showing the moments after a police officer fatally shot a motorcyclist earlier this month.

In the early morning of Sept. 11, motorcyclist 31-year-old Terrence Sterling was fatally shot near 3rd and M streets in Northwest after police say he rammed the passenger-side door of a police car while trying to flee a traffic stop.

D.C. police officer Brian Trainer, 27, fired the fatal shots. Trainer, who has worked for D.C. police for four years, was the only officer on the scene equipped with a body-worn camera and did not turn it on until after the shooting.

The footage was released a day after protesters called for more transparency in the case. On Monday, protesters blocked the intersection near the shooting, and demanded the body-camera footage be released and police give more information about why the officer who fired his weapon did not have his body camera on.

The body-camera footage released Tuesday begins shortly after the shots were fired and shows the officers providing medical assistance to a Sterling, who was black. It’s not yet clear how long after the shooting Trainer turned on his body camera.

In the video, you can hear an officer saying, “Come on, man, keep breathing. Look at me. Keep looking at me.” Another officer is performing CPR on Sterling, who is lying on the ground astride his motorcycle and bleeding heavily. A bystander can be heard shouting in the background.

Kevin Donahue, the city’s deputy mayor for public safety, said Tuesday that Sterling’s family was shown that footage before it was released to the public.

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser authorized the release of the footage because she said it is in the public interest and consistent with the goals of the body-camera program “to create broader accountability between law enforcement and communities, and to maintain open and transparent government,” according to a D.C. news release.

Watch the body-cam footage. Editor’s note: The video contains graphic content.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow @WTOP on Twitter to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2020 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up