The family of Pamela Turner has retained the services of high-powered civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, according to a statement obtained by MadameNoire.
Turner was a 45-year-old Black woman who was shot and killed by an unidentified Baytown, Texas, officer on Monday evening. The aftermath of the interaction with the officer and her subsequent death, was captured on video and has again stoked conversations surrounding the value of Black lives.
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“Police are sworn to protect society’s most vulnerable citizens, but instead this officer tried to tase and then killed Ms. Turner,” Crump’s statement reads. “She was minding her own business in her own neighborhood when the officer shot her dead. We will pursue every avenue of justice for the mourning family who are also the victims of this senseless killing.”
Crump is a Tallahassee, Florida-based lawyer who has also represented the families of Trayvon Martin, Tamara Rice and Michael Brown.
Turner’s death was particularly shocking due to the fact that she was approached by the officer while she was standing in the parking lot of her apartment complex. The officer maintains that he pursued Turner on the basis of outstanding warrants and shot her after she reached for his taser. Turner can be heard shouting “I’m pregnant!” moments before the officer fires five shots, fatally striking the mother and grandmother.
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In an interview with CBS News, Baytown police confirmed that Turner was not pregnant. The report was also corroborated by family members who spoke to the outlet. Turner reportedly struggled with mental illness and was taking medication for schizophrenia.
Turner had previously warned her family about the officer, saying that she had been harassed by him on multiple occasions. According to Turner’s sister Antoinette who spoke with Click 2 Houston, the officer is also a neighbor of Turner’s.
Baytown police have not released the name of the officer, but did confirm he was placed on paid administrative leave during the department’s investigation.
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