Chicago - The brutal killing of an unarmed Chicago man outside a west side CHA housing project on September 7, 2013 by an off duty Chicago police officer, Kenneth Walker, has sparked outrage as recently released surveillance video contradicts virtually everything officer Walker, who shot and killed Marlon Horton, claimed happened prior to the shooting.
Horton had gone to the complex to meet his girlfriend Rhonda Day in the early morning hours Saturday morning. Day had spent the night at her mother’s apartment in the building.
When Horton arrived the security guards wouldn’t allow him to enter, one of which was the off duty cop that eventually killed him. Horton’s cell phone had died so he was not able to call Day to let him into the building.
Horton left the lobby and urinated on or near Walker’s SUV. At this point the female security guard says to Walker, “He is not f**king pissing,” and both Walker and the female security guard then exit the building to confront Horton.
The officer and security guard make absolutely no attempt to arrest Horton, in fact judging by the video the only intention for going outside was to confront/assault him. Never once do they have cuffs out or is any attempt made to subdue.
The officers clearly aren’t in fear of their lives or concerned that the public is in imminent danger, as the video clearly shows people coming and going from the building as they are engaging Horton.
Officer Walker, during the investigation of the killing, prior to being aware that video of the incident existed, claimed that he and the security guard never initiated any physical contact with Horton, and in fact claimed that Horton knocked him to the ground and overpowered him when he attempted to take him into custody and began to pummel him with punches.
Clearly this is blatant fabrication used as a means to justify shooting Horton. In fact, what can clearly be seen happening in the video is in stark contrast to officer Walker’s version of events.
Walker never attempts to take Horton into custody, his cuffs never come out, and the only physical contact was actually officer Walker kicking Horton in the chest. There are no attempts to take anyone into custody. The only time Horton gets physical is to defend himself after he is assaulted by these two jackboot thugs.
Walker was simply angry that Horton urinated on his vehicle and decided he was going to assault him as a means of revenge, not realizing the entire incident was being caught on camera. These actions are completely unprofessional, but add in the fact that he subsequently draws his firearm on an unarmed man and proceeds to shoot and kill him makes one question the mental health of this officer.
He is clearly not fit to be a law enforcement officer. No procedure was followed, as you don’t draw your weapon without an intention of potentially using it, yet both the security guard and Walker have their weapons drawn without any justification. You can clearly see that there was no threat of deadly force being used against them causing them to fear for their lives.
Any attempt to claim there was a fear of their lives is refuted by the video as the female security guard’s weapon, in the moments before the shooting, is down. One wouldn’t have their weapon pointed down if they truly feared for their lives.
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At any point these two could have went inside and called the authorities, they could have wrestled him to the ground and cuffed him if needed. Yet, none of these actions were taken, instead they exchange words, assault Horton and then proceed to kill him in cold blood as can be seen in the video.
After the shooting, both the female security guard and Walker call 911 to report the incident. The female during her call to 911 tells them an officer shot a suspect, but when the operator asks who was the officer involved… there is silence. She refuses to identify the officer that committed the shooting. If this had been a by the book incident why would she refuse to identify the officer that did the shooting during the 911 call?
As for officer Walker, he can be seen post shooting strolling casually into the lobby to call 911. During his call to 911 he first states that he needs a supervisor and then tells the operator he needs more police and finally he gets around to saying he needs an ambulance.
Once they have confirmed that someone is shot he is put on the line with a fireman that directs Walker to render aid by applying pressure to the would. Walker does no such thing. In fact the video shows no aid rendered whatsoever to Horton who lay on the ground dying.
For a moment it looks like the security guard is going to assist until you realize she was only bending down to pick up her coffee. Her and Walker stand around sipping coffee while Horton lay in front of them dying on the ground. An animal would have been treated with more compassion then was show to Horton as he lay on the ground bleeding out.
The attorney representing the family of Horton, Jeffery B. Granich, went on record stating,
“After they killed this man, they paused to have a cup of coffee. He got cold before their coffee did.”
As far as accountability, there has been none. The Chicago PD immediately cleared officer Walker even though he can clearly be seen murdering Horton on the video and was never in any imminent life threatening danger. As far as the Independent Police Review Authority in Chicago they have done virtually nothing in providing any type of accountability, just another rubber stamp on rogue police violence.
Officer Walker unjustifiably killed Marlon Horton in cold blood. Officer Walker and the CPD must to be held accountable, the use of deadly force in this incident was not even close to warranted. There needs to be justice for Marlon Horton.
Below is the entire portion of footage in a single video:
Jay Syrmopoulos is an investigative journalist, freethinker, researcher, and ardent opponent of authoritarianism. He is currently a graduate student at University of Denver pursuing a masters in Global Affairs. Jay's work has previously been published on BenSwann.com and WeAreChange.org. You can follow him on Twitter @sirmetropolis and on Facebook at Sir Metropolis.