Virginia Family Demands Justice for Xzavier Hill, a Black Teen Fatally Shot by Police

A mother is demanding Virginia State Police release video she believes shows negligence in her son’s death. Eighteen-year-old Xzavier Hill died after what police are calling a “high-speed chase.”

via: Complex

A Virginia mother is calling for justice after her teenage son was fatally shot by state police.

According to the Richmond-Times Dispatch, 18-year-old Xzavier Hill was killed Jan. 9 following an alleged high-speed chase on Interstate 64. State police say officers began pursuing Hill after he was spotted in Henrico County driving 98 miles per house in a 65 mph zone. Law enforcement claim Hill led them on a chase, with speeds exceeding 120 mph, before he attempted to make a U-turn and crashed his vehicle.

Virginia State Police say two troopers then approached Hill’s car and commanded him to exit with his hands up. Officers claim Hill then displayed a firearm, prompting officers to open fire on the Black teen. However, Hill’s mother, Latoya Benton, is disputing officers’ claims about the events leading up to her son’s death.

“My son is not a thug, He’s a child, he’s 18 years old,” Benton told reporters over the weekend. “I’m begging with you all, I’m pleading with you all. Please, I want justice for my son.”

Benton says she and her family have viewed dashcam footage that proves her son was cooperating with the officers and never displayed a gun.

“He reached out [and] he got shot in his left hand,” Benton said. “He was out of the car with his left hand and he turned his body around” in an attempt to place his right hand out of the window.

She continued: “Xzavier says, OK, my door is open. The officers go to open the door to get in there … and they never gave him a chance to get out of the car.”

Though Hill’s family claims the teen never owned a gun, Virginia police say troopers recovered a “jammed” firearm inside the vehicle. Officers also say the alleged weapon was reported stolen the day after Hill’s death.

Benton and her family are calling for the prosecution of the involved officers, and have demanded the state to release the dashcam footage of the deadly incident. Goochland County Commonwealth’s Attorney D. Michael Caudill told the Richmond-Times Dispatch that the footage may be released once the internal investigation is completed. He also confirmed the two involved officers have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the probe.

There has to be a new approach to policing, deadly force should be the absolute last option. Sending prayers to Xzavier Hill’s family.

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