There are more questions than answers pertaining to the death of Lindani Myeni, a South African man who was shot dead by police in the United States (US). His death is the latest in a string of incidents involving police and unarmed black men, who have died at their hands.
According to international news outlets, the KwaZulu-Natal-born former rugby player was embroiled in a scuffle with police in Honolulu, Hawaii on Wednesday night, 15 April 2021. Police allege that Myeni who lived nearby, followed a woman into her home and took off his shoes.
The police claim they were forced to use lethal force after Myeni attacked them, leaving three of the officers wounded.
His death comes as America comes to grips with the deaths of several other unarmed black men, allegedly at the hands of police. In one of the latest incidents, Kimberly Potter, a female police officer, faces manslaughter charges after she fatally shot Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old black motorist during a traffic stop in Minnesota.
This sparked demonstrations not far from where a former police officer was on trial for the murder of George Floyd, AFP reported. Floyd died after being an officer who was arresting him , stepped on his neck for nearly nine minutes. His death re-awakened the Black Lives Matter movement, which has long been at the forefront of exposing police brutality exerted towards black men in America.
Honolulu police: Lindani Myeni wasn’t shot because he’s black
Honolulu’s Police Chief Susan Ballard’s has denied that Myeni was shot because he is black and said he had exhibited bizarre behaviour.
“Officers administered first aid to the suspect and the man was transported to the hospital in critical condition. He died of his injuries at the hospital. The three responding officers were also taken to the hospital for multiple injuries,” Ballard said.
Honolulu Police release body camera footage which, for the most part, shows what happened.
“The first officer to arrive has multiple facial fractures, a concussion and injuries to his arms and legs. He remains hospitalised. He was 23 years of service. The second officer suffered multiple injuries to his body, arms and legs. The third officer had a concussion and multiple abrasions to the body, arm and legs. Both officers received medical treatment but have since been released”
Honolulu’s Police Chief Susan Ballard