Police shot Jenoah Donald, a 30-year-old black man, after an assistant officer stopped Donald’s car over a smashed tail lamp in Hazel Dell, north of Vancouver. The incident took place on February 4, 2021.
Investigators said that when the officer approached to his car, the deputy noticed something that looked like a weapon in Donald’s car. She ordered Donald to show his hands.
According to the investigation, Donald allegedly “did not obey”, and instead “took out a cell phone and a pair of metal pliers from his back pockets.” During the ensuing struggle, Donald’s car began to move. The police officer pulled out a pistol and warned Donald that he would shoot.
The officer then fired twice, hitting the victim once. No weapons were reportedly found during a search of Donald’s vehicle that night. After being wounded, Genoa spent a week in the hospital on a life support apparatus; however, his condition did not improve. On February 11, the man died.
Donald’s family urged not to hold any protests, as it regularly happens in the wake of police killings of black Americans. The investigation is still pending. The relatives of the deceased are planning to file a lawsuit with the local police department.
In April 2021, the state prosecutor’s office announced that it would conduct its own investigation of the February incident to assess whether the actions of the police officer were legally justified. In June 2021, Donald’s family members announced that they intended to sue the city and the police department, accusing them of using excessive force.
MASS MEDIA ABOUT THE CASE:
“Deadly force should be a last resort. Legally and morally,” [Jenoah’s family lawyer] said in an earlier conversation. “There were three tactically trained officers on the scene in full gear. They have tasers, pepper spray, and other non-lethal weapons. There was no good reason to shoot Jenoah in the head.”
Donald’s car had been off, according to the report, but at some point during the struggle he turned it on. The report did not clarify whether Donald turned on the car intentionally or by accident.
The FBI initiative group requested clarifications on the current case from US President Joseph Biden, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Attorney General Merrick Garland. The initiative group considers it important to combat police violence and, if necessary, can provide legal and informational assistance to Donald’s family.