Chicago Anti-Police Protesters Are Falling for Fake News
Critics don't seem to care a whit that bodycam footage shows the shooting of Harith Augustus was likely justified by police
Although police body camera footage may tell another story, it appears as if protests will continue in the city of Chicago over the death of 37-year-old Harith Augustus.
Harith Augustus was shot and killed over the weekend by members of the Chicago Police Department, following a confrontation with authorities in which he was armed. With protests’ gaining momentum, the Chicago police decided to release the body camera footage from the incident, yet protesters haven’t quit.
On Fox News’ “The Ingraham Angle” Monday night, former Los Angeles Police Department detective Mark Fuhrman, a Fox News contributor, said that with the evidence that has emerged, the current protests are based on something that’s not even true.
“Once again, we have a false narrative,” Fuhrman said. “[It’s] just like in the Michael Brown case — we have a narrative that his hands were up. He was running away, not running toward the officer. Now, Superintendent [Eddie T.] Johnson in Chicago immediately released something that is really out of protocol and harms an investigation, but he did it to try to say exactly what’s happening.”
“This bodycam is the view of an officer in a tactical situation and it’s crystal clear, something you will rarely see again,” Fuhrman told host Laura Ingraham. “Everything there is the evidence that points to a justified police shooting. I am in shock that the public in Chicago is up in arms about this man acting as he did, armed, around four officers.”
Several hundred protesters appeared on 71st Street in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood on Monday to challenge what they believe to be police brutality, as ABC 7 in Chicago reported. And protesters threw rocks and urine-filled objects at police officers, CBS reported. Some police officers suffered minor injuries, damage was done to a pair of squad cars — and, in total, police made four arrests.
This violence occurred even though the released video showed Augustus, who was armed at the time, breaking away from police officers and reaching toward his waistband. He was carrying a gun, yet he reportedly did not have a concealed carry permit. From there, he was shot dead by a police officer.
“You can’t do anything more to police officers than make them wear this so that you can view what the officer views and actually see the action the officer takes and the suspect’s reaction,” Fuhrman said. “If they’re not satisfied with that, then stop placating … their demands. Just stop listening.”
“They don’t even believe the video that was released,” added Ingraham. “You see stuff online saying that ‘it’s all fake. It’s a fake video. It was made by the police. It’s not really what happened.’ To them, it’s another Laquan McDonald situation.”
In 2014, McDonald, who was not carrying a firearm, was shot 16 times as he walked away from the police — and the bodycam footage was not released for more than a year. With Augustus, however, the Chicago police wasted no time in getting the video out to the public.
The situation with Augustus came to a head after police officers grew suspicious about a “bulge around his waistband.” The police acquired his handgun as evidence at the scene of the shooting.
Prior to his final run-in with police, Augustus worked at a barber shop in the city and was nicknamed “Snoop.” Although he had not been arrested in the past decade, police said he had three arrests on his record in Cook County — two counts of misdemeanor battery and another misdemeanor count for marijuana possession.
Tom Joyce is a freelance writer from the South Shore of Massachusetts. He covers sports, pop culture, and politics and has contributed to The Federalist, Newsday, and other outlets.