WASHINGTON: Police in the United States shot dead a 20-year-old Muslim student for ‘threatening behaviour’, which, according to his friends, was just a bad reaction to drugs.
Witnesses said Feras Morad, 20, had reportedly taken magic mushrooms for the first time at a party in Long Beach, California, and appeared to be walking around like a ‘bird with a broken wing’.
According to a witness account, Morad became confused and unresponsive and was “asking friend what he was doing” after which he jumped through a second-storey window.
Morad received a ‘deep gash’ from going through the glass and hitting the concrete below, following which his friends called in the police.
Upon their arrival, the young Muslim boy was tasered and subsequently shot dead by the officers.
The family of the boy confirmed that they received the news over Facebook due to the failure of the police, hospital and LA county coroner’s office to inform them.
Police said that the student had been acting ‘threateningly’ and refused to comply with officers, who then utilised “an electronic control device, an impact weapon and physical force to gain compliance,” according to a statement.
The police statement, however, became questionable as testimonies were posted online disputing the police version of the story.
A statement posted on the Justice4Feras Facebook page says he was “shirtless, without any weapon, bleeding from multiple wounds, and possibly suffering head trauma from the fall when officers made their demands”.
It further added that he did not physically swing, attack, or verbally indicate aggression toward the police officer or anyone else but was unable to comply because he was confused and injured “like a bird with a broken wing hobbling around in the house”.
Witness reports said that there was no fight between Morad and the police, just the police officer trying to subdue him.
As friends were removed from the scene by emergency personnel, they continued to scream that Feras was unarmed and in need of help as the unnamed police officer fired three shots, all on target.
“He wasn’t supposed to be shot, even if he did something, if he was under the influence, he should not have been shot, he does not harm anyone,” said Morad’s father, Amr Morad.
A nationally-ranked debater at high school, Morad’s family had high hopes of him becoming an attorney general who would represent victims of police brutality.
It was further reported that Morad had a 3.9 GPA at Moorpark College, and friends on the Facebook page said he was also a good army cadet.