Warning: The video below is graphic.
Video has been released showing a Baltimore County police officer fatally shooting 19-year-old Keith McLeod during a “confrontation” in Reisterstown on Wednesday.
McLeod, who was not armed, was shot three times after “whipping his hand around and pointing it toward the officer, as if with a weapon,” police said. McLeod was suspected of trying to buy cough syrup with a fake prescription at a nearby pharmacy, and fled on foot when the officer arrived.
McLeod, of Washington, D.C., was pronounced dead at a local hospital after the shooting. The video was released Friday. The officer involved in the shooting, David Earomirski, has been placed on administrative leave.
Police Chief James Johnson said that witnesses heard the officer telling McLeod, “Don’t do this!” Johnson said McLeod told the officer repeatedly “I’m going to kill you.”
Police said the shooting was captured on surveillance cameras on a nearby business. The video shows McLeod moving toward the officer, who has his gun drawn. Police said McLeod reached around to the small of his back and then whipped his hand around like he was pointing a gun. The video shows the officer fire “swiftly” as McLeod’s hand comes forward from his back. The video does not include audio.
The officer “had one second to make a life or death decision,” police said. “The video shows the officer had every reason to believe the suspect was armed and that he was in danger.”
Police said McLeod was trying to obtain Promethazine plus Codeine. Police say the cough syrup is often combined with alcohol to produce a high. McLeod was taken to Northwest Hospital and declared dead. He was shot three times.
Reisterstown, Maryland, is about 55 miles from D.C., and 25 miles from Baltimore.