CHRISTIANITY DAILY

Tulsa Residents Hold Vigil for Terence Crutcher at Baptist Church

Terence Crutcher
(Photo : Paladin Justice / Flickr / CC)
Terence Crutcher was shot dead by police when he had his arms up in the air. He did not appear to have followed the exact command of the officers, but his shooting was unprovoked, according to experts who studied the video footage of the scene.

A vigil was held at Metropolitan Baptist Church in Tulsa on Wednesday, which was attended by Christians, Jews, Muslims, and people of other religions from all over the city to mourn the death of Terence Crutcher who was killed on Friday by police officer Betty Shelby.

Thousands of people watched the live video coverage of the vigil, and cars were seen filling up the parking lot and lining the streets for over a mile near the church, according to the Tulsa World.

The church was offered as "a space for safe, yet constructive expression of our righteous rage" by Rev. Ray Owens.

"We come together with a sense of shared outrage for injustice,... another unarmed African American man gunned down in the streets," he said.

Rev. Owens told the people who had gathered at the church that he had received messages from friends in the city who wanted to ask him, "Where can I go to cry, to say how I feel?" He also gave the people cards asking them to "write your lament, your outrage."

Crutcher had an encounter with the police as he was stranded on the road because his car had broken down. Police arrived at the scene when they received a call from 911 saying that a car was standing in the middle of the road with its door open.

He had his arms raised in the air but did not seem to follow the commands exactly, according to police accounts. Crutcher was first tasered but officer Shelby fired a shot at the right side of his chest. He died in the hospital.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said that he was very troubled by the shooting which was unjustifiable.

"He looked like a really good man and maybe I'm a little clouded because I saw his family talking about him after the fact, so you get a little bit different image maybe. But to me he looked like somebody who was doing what they were asking him to do and this young officer I don't know what she was thinking. I don't know what she was thinking but I am very, very troubled by that," said Trump, while addressing a clergy gathering at New Spirit Revival Center in Cleveland Heights, Ohio.

Trump said that while he had good faith in the country's police, some people in the department may be psychologically unfit to work in the police.

Shelby has been charged with a first-degree manslaughter.

Tags Terence Crutcher, Officer Betty Shelby, Metropolitan Baptist Church

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