State Police Release Video From Robbins Security Guard Shooting | WBEZ
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Illinois State Police Release New Video From The Shooting Of A Robbins Security Guard

The Illinois State Police released new video footage from the shooting of a Jemel Roberson Thursday, which the agency said shows the white officer who killed the black security guard gave him multiple verbal commands before firing.

Jemel Roberson, 26, was armed and working security at Manny's Blue Room bar in the village of Robbins around 4 a.m. on a Sunday morning last November when a shooting occurred. Roberson was subduing one of the people involved when Ian Covey, an officer from the nearby village of Midlothian, fatally shot him.

The video released by the Illinois State Police comes from a police car’s dashcam. The vehicle is parked away from the shooting but captures some sounds.  While the audio is low-quality, the agency said you can hear Officer Covey tell Roberson to get down on the ground and drop his gun for a few seconds before shooting him.

The release followed the Cook County Sheriff’s Office decision Monday to make public a different batch of videos from that morning. Those videos capture the turbulent few minutes immediately following the shooting: Officers who seemingly just arrived on the scene are berated by emotional witnesses for Roberson’s death.

“Everything was clear,” one man wearing the vest of a security guard said to an officer, in an exchange captured by a bodycam. “I’m telling (Covey) he was working with us. Cool out. He’s working with us. He shot (Roberson) four or five times after we told him he’s with us.”

Those witness statements were not included in a “preliminary investigation” statement released by the state police just a few days after the shooting. That statement emphasized that Roberson had “no markings readily identifying him as a security guard.”

State Police Chief Information Officer Lt. Joseph Hutchins would not directly answer a question about why those witness statements were not included in the agency’s November release, saying, “The press release distributed in November contained preliminary investigative findings, including witness statements which were corroborated through evidence.”

The state police said in its statement released Tuesday that its investigation of the shooting is “nearing its conclusion.”

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