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Video shows police fault in death of Anton Black

A 19-year-old black teenager named Anton Black died while in police custody in September.  The family was vocal about not receiving any information about his death from local authorities. Greenboro police released body camera footage two days later. (Kim Hairston / Baltimore Sun)

I read with interest the letter concerning Anton Black's death from Jason C. Johnson the president of the Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund (“Sun jumps to false conclusions about Greensboro death,” Jan. 30). Like Mr. Johnson, I watched the video, and I am wondering what "relevant facts" he is referring to.

I saw an unarmed kid begin to jog away from a police officer who gives chase until cornering the kid who has shut himself into the family car in the driveway. Is this what Mr. Johnson is referring to as "behavior consistent with mental illness?” I'm not sure, but what I saw next was the officer wearing the camera bust out the window with his baton (without apparently attempting to communicate with the boy) and reach in and use an electric shocking device on his body. As the boy exits the car he is grabbed and sat on by a large adult whose attempts along with others present (including a random motorcyclist who participates; not being a cop I'm not sure if this is "empowering" procedure) until he stops breathing and exits this life as his mother watches.

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Unlike Mr. Johnson of Alexandria, Va., I live about 10 miles down the road from Greensboro in Denton and have had several interactions under less than favorable circumstances with both officers from the Caroline County Sheriff's Department and the Federalsburg City Police Department. I have found them both to be unfailingly polite, clear with their actions and thoroughly professional.

In my humble opinion the actions that the Greensboro police officer took in this particular instance were totally unnecessary and inexcusable. A young man full of promise is dead. I look for more "relevant facts" in the future.

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Dave Atwater, Denton

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