Witnesses: Man posed no threat before being fatally shot by Oklahoma officer

Credit: Derik Hefner

TULSA, Okla. –  Six witnesses have testified that an unarmed black man who was fatally shot by a white Oklahoma police officer didn’t say or do anything indicating he planned to attack officers at the scene.

A police officer who was inside a police helicopter hovering overhead described 40-year-old Terence Crutcher as looking “like a bad dude” who “could be on something” moments before Crutcher was shot by Tulsa officer Betty Jo Shelby last September.

The statement by officer Michael Richert outraged Crutcher’s family, who said it indicated racial bias. Richert told prosecutors Wednesday he “had no idea” if Crutcher was on something.

Prosecutors charged Shelby with manslaughter, saying she overreacted when she fatally shot Crutcher because he was obeying her commands.

She has pleaded not guilty and her trial continued Thursday.