A shocking video shows a white police officer firing seven times at a black teenage driver, who had both hands on the wheel.
The 17-year-old driver Antwon Gallmon was left hospitalized after the incident and the cop Robert Cooper has been suspended from duty.
Gallmon can clearly be seen attempting to drive away from the scene as Cooper aims his gun at the car and shouts, ‘Stop! Stop! Do not make me shoot you!’
But Gallmon, keen to escape from the scene, swings his Honda Accord away from the cop and drives off.
Cooper responds by firing seven shots into the vehicle – rapidly and from a close distance – as it zooms past before telling his dispatcher, ‘Shots fired! Shots fired! He tried to hit me with his vehicle’.
He repeats this as he gets in his car to chase Gallmon, saying, ‘He almost hit me! I was barely able to get out of the way!’
It seems the officer is suggesting the teen tried to run him over rather than alleging he fired at Gallmon.
However, footage from Cooper’s dashcam from the May 19 incident – now released by South Carolina State Police, The State reported – clearly shows the teen making no attempt to strike the officer, with Cooper barely attempting to move out of the way as the car drives off.
Albeit briefly, both of the youth’s hands can be seen on the wheel and he doesn’t seem to be holding a weapon, although two guns were later found in the vehicle which were believed to have been stolen.
Shortly after the shooting Cooper told another officer he felt ‘nauseous’.
‘I don’t think I did anything wrong,’ he can be heard saying. ‘I did everything I could trying to give commands, how many times. I even tried to jump out of the way before..and I barely made it. I barely made it.’
Gallmon was apprehended after a two-mile police chase through the town of Forest Acres in Columbia, South Carolina.
He had been hit by at least one bullet and was hospitalized after the early-morning shooting near an apartment complex.
He was later taken to a detention center and released from the jail the next day on a $10,000 (£7,600) bond.
Gallmon was charged with failure to stop for the police, possession of a stolen vehicle, unlawful possession of a pistol, possession of marijuana, possession of a ‘Schedule 1’ drug, and driving without a licence.
Cooper, who had been in the force for six years has been suspended with pay while his use of deadly force is under intense examination.
Forest Acres police chief Gene Sealy has not yet commented on the footage and is waiting for the results of the State Law Enforcement Division’s investigation.
Gallmon is expected to appear in court today.