Police: 16-year-old shot, killed by officers in north St. Louis
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - A 16-year-old was shot and killed after exposing a gun to officers in north St. Louis City late Sunday night, according to police.
St. Louis police said that two Drug Enforcement and Intervention Detectives (DEI) were working the Summer Violence Initiative when they were at a Shell Gas Station in the 2800 block of N. Florissant. At about 11:36 p.m., the detectives saw multiple subjects in the parking lot armed with guns before notifying other officers in the area. Police said both the detectives drove to the lot to investigate. Both officers were dressed in plain clothes with a black ballistic vest with the word “POLICE” in white letters on the front and back.
According to a police report, Darryl Ross, 16, had a gun when he walked off of the gas station lot and into the east alley. The detectives left their car and followed him into the alley before announcing themselves as police officers. Police said Ross then ran through an opening in an iron fence across the gas station before officers chased him on foot. As the chase continued, he tripped over a curb and fell on the sidewalk dropping a gun. When detectives got closer to the teen, he reached for the gun before they both fired shots at him.
The report said both detectives tried to help Ross until an ambulance arrived. He was taken to the hospital where he later died. The gun was later found at the scene. Both officers were uninjured. The officers involved were a 37-year-old with 14 years of service on the police force and a 27-year-old with 4 years on the force.
On Monday, News 4 spoke with Ross’ grandparents who were at the Shell gas station hoping to find answers as to what happened.
“He loved his brothers and siblings. He was a very smart kid, good in school. He only wanted something to eat with his mom. He didn’t deserve to get mauled down by the police,” said Tanya Thomas, his grandmother.
Thomas said Ross was with his mother the night of the incident. At one point, she said he went to the bathroom around the corner of the gas station and ran because he was scared when police approached him undercover. She also said he did have a gun on him, but at no point did he try to grab it when he fell.
“That baby, he had no gun in his hand. He was running for his life and he fell on the ground,” said Thomas. “They still shoot. Come one. Who wouldn’t want justice.”
Thomas added, “Give us justice, arrest them. they murdered Darryl Ross for no reason. Those cops need to go to jail. That’s where they put bad people right?”
The Force Investigation Unit is investigating the incident, which includes looking at surveillance video from the Shell gas station and conducting interviews. Public Safety Director Dan Isom says at the time of the incident, the police were not wearing body cameras.
Mayor Tishuara Jones issued the following statement about the shooting:
“I have been briefed on last night’s officer-involved shooting in Old North. Losing our youth to violence shows how our system has failed them time and time again. Reflecting on the circumstances that led up to this young man’s death breaks my heart, both as a mayor and as a mother of a teenage son. This comes just after a family lost their father, Bada Ali, in an officer-involved shooting last week.
”Our communities rightfully have questions about these incidents. The Force Investigation Unit is handling both cases and will pass information on to the Circuit Attorney’s Office and then on to the Civilian Oversight Board. Officers involved have been placed on administrative duty. I have also directed the Public Safety Department to release body-worn camera footage where available to family as soon as possible.
”Alongside the St. Louis Board of Aldermen, my administration is working to strengthen oversight because building trust through transparency and accountability is essential. I remain fully committed to delivering effective oversight of our police department, as well as alternative responses that connect the right professionals to the right call for those experiencing mental health crises and similar challenges.”
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