SACRAMENTO – It’s been seven months since 22-year-old Stephon Clark, the father of two little boys, was shot and killed by two Sacramento police officers in the backyard of his grandmother’s Meadowview house in South Sacramento.
Thursday, the Sacramento Police Department (SPD) completed what it calls, “a thorough investigation” of the March 18 police shooting of Clark. An autopsy performed at the family’s request declared he was shot eight times.
The SPD has submitted the results of that investigation to the Sacramento County District Attorney and the California Department of Justice for their review, Police Chief Daniel Hahn said in a written statement.
“Our role has been to conduct a thorough investigation and give the Sacramento County District Attorney and State of California Department of Justice (DOJ) the information they need to reach a decision,” Chief Hahn said. “We have taken this responsibility seriously, and we have delivered on our promise to thoroughly pursue the facts and report them.”
During this seven-month investigation, beginning in the moments immediately following the shooting and lasting until mid-October, the SPD says investigators interviewed numerous witnesses and processed a large amount of physical evidence from the scene.
Investigators also examined many hours of video from officers’ body-worn cameras, in-car cameras, and from a Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department helicopter. Additionally, a “significant” amount of forensic evidence was analyzed.
Ste’Vante Clark, who was attending a political forum at the Greater Sacramento Urban League after his family was notified about the case submission to the County D.A.’s office and the DOJ, presented a family press release to The OBSERVER.
The members of Clark family expressed that they are aware that results of the investigations were sent to the two entities, though “details have been deemed private to the public,” the press release stated.
“There was no mention (in the police department’s written media release) of specifics of the investigation, such as any forensic evidence found, the findings from the contents of Stephon Clark’s cell phone,” the Clark family said in its statement.
The police initially said Stephon Clark had a gun before shooting him. It was factually determined that he was in possession of a cell phone.
The March 18 shooting has sparked months of protests and marches from the community calling for the officers to be charged with Clark’s murder.
Now that the results of SPD’s investigation is in the hands of the County D.A.’s office and the DOJ, it will be up to those administrations to clear the officers of wrongdoing or file charges against the two officers, who were placed back on duty weeks after the shooting of Clark.
By Antonio R. Harvey
OBSERVER Staff Writer