You can watch the video below in full, but be aware that it is very disturbing and graphic because it captures the moment that Officer Jeronimo Yanez shot into the car at close range and struck Castile, a well-liked cafeteria worker, multiple times. Yanez fired seven shots; five of those struck Castile, CNN reported.
Castile’s 2016 death has sparked outrage since it happened because his girlfriend, Lavish Reynolds, who was also in the car, streamed the aftermath of the shooting on Facebook Live. However, that video started streaming when Castile was already shot.
The police dashcam video released on June 20 is the first view of the shooting in the moments right before it and when it occurred. It shows how rapidly the shooting unfolded.
This is Reynolds’ Facebook Live video. It is also very disturbing.
The jury found Yanez not guilty, sparking outrage from Castile’s mother and people in the community. At the time it occurred, the death had triggered massive protests throughout the country, and it was cited as a motivation for later ambush-style police shootings.
Castile had a legal permit to carry a firearm, and the new police video makes it very clear that he told Officer Yanez this fact.
The video shows Yanez pulling over the car carrying Lavish Reynolds and Castile.
“Hello, sir, how are you. The reason I pulled you over is your brake lights are out. So you only have one active brake light and that’s going to be your passenger side one,” Yanez says, approaching the vehicle in a calm demeanor.
The officer asks for a license and insurance.
“Sir, I have to tell you I do have a firearm on me,” Castile tells the officer, also in a calm demeanor.
A second officer had approached the passenger window of the car. The officers had been looking for an armed robbery suspect, but it was later confirmed that this suspect was not Castile, who had only a minor record, largely for traffic.
“OK, Don’t reach for it then,” Yanez says. “Don’t pull it out.”
“I’m not pulling it out,” Castile says.
“Don’t pull it out,” the officer says.
The officer reaches into the window and fires multiple times through it.
“You just killed my boyfriend. He wasn’t reaching,” Reynolds says emotionally.
“I wasn’t reaching,” Castile says.
“Don’t pull it out. Don’t move,” the agitated officer shouts.
The back door opens and a small child exits the car.
According to CNN, Yanez can be heard telling a supervisor that “he told Castile not to reach for the gun and that Castile’s ‘grip [was] a lot wider than a wallet.’ Yanez continues, saying ‘I don’t know where the gun was. He didn’t tell me where the [expletive deleted] gun was.'”
Castile was described as a good person by both his family and community members, including a parent who knew him at the school where he was a cafeteria worker. He was an honors student in high school who received straight As, and on Facebook he showed concern about social justice issues.
A parent whose child went to the school in Minnesota where he worked in the cafeteria said “This is a GOOD MAN” and talked about how Castile would sneak extra graham crackers to children and feed them like a grandma. He also had time to give a borderline autistic child a hug every day and remember to call all children by their names.
Castile, 32, was shot on July 6, 2016 around 9 p.m. by a St. Anthony Police Department officer in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, which is near the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul.
Castile died at 9:37 p.m. at a local hospital, said the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. In the Facebook Live video, Castile’s girlfriend says the officer shot him several times, according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
The Police Department released very few details in the first hours after the shooting, other than to say that a gun was recovered at the scene and the shooting originated with a traffic stop and that two officers were present.
Protests immediately erupted after his death, both at the scene and also at the governor’s mansion, where people draped yellow police tape over the gate. “I told him to get his hand out; I told him not to reach for it,” the officer says in the Facebook Live video. Reynolds adds: “Oh my God, don’t tell me he’s dead, please don’t tell me my boyfriend just went like that.”