Police in suburban Dolton have released body camera footage from the morning of July 27, when 19-year-old Alexis Wilson was killed following a confrontation with officers at a restaurant that ended with her speeding away from the scene before crashing her vehicle into a nearby bike shop.
The body camera footage shows the scene at Baba’s Famous Steak and Lemonade at approximately 1 a.m. on the fateful morning.
Employees of the restaurant had called police, reporting that a woman was banging on the drive-thru window of the restaurant and had a weapon.
The footage shows officers confronting Wilson, demanding that she exit her vehicle and put her hands on the roof of the car. Wilson is heard in the video screaming at the officers that she is naked, and refusing to exit the minivan.
After a man got out of the minivan, and after an officer reached for the keys, Wilson began to drive away, with the officer still partially inside the vehicle.
After the van fled the scene, gunshots are heard on the recording, and a short time later the vehicle crashed into the side of a nearby bike shop.
The officer who was in the vehicle as it drove away sustained serious injuries, and was hospitalized. Wilson was later pronounced dead at the scene, according to police.
Dolton police say that the footage was released to provide “transparency” to the public, as an investigation into the shooting remains ongoing.
“The vehicle is being used as a weapon, and our officer feared for his safety,” Police Chief Robert Collins Jr. said. “The facts are the facts, and what I wanted to make sure we did today (was) in the interest of transparency.”
According to police, they offered the Wilson family the opportunity to see the footage on Wednesday. The family expressed outrage following the release of the video, saying they weren’t consulted or warned that it was about to be released publicly.
“I feel disrespected, from day one until now,” Cara Wilson, Alexis’ mother, said. “No empathy, no compassion, no phone call, no nothing from no one.”
“We don’t have the power to pull bodycams. We don’t have the power to edit things. This is not a movie,” Alonzo Wilson, Alexis’ father, added.
The family and their attorneys are calling for Dolton police to release all footage of the incident, saying that the footage released Thursday was an edited version of the video they saw.
Illinois State Police are handling the use-of-force investigation, and have possession of the red minivan involved in the incident.
According to officials, a 9mm handgun with an extended magazine was found at the scene of the incident.
Dolton Mayor Tiffany Henyard spoke out after the release of the video, offering her condolences to the Wilson family and her prayers to the officers who were injured in the incident.
“This was a sad and unfortunate occurrence that has left a dark cloud over our community. As a mother and a daughter, my heart is heavy for the family of Ms. Alexis Wilson,” she said.
Henyard says she will seek to give a private apology to the Wilson family for recent remarks she made expressing support for the actions of police in the case, which she says were based on “information at the time” she made the comments. A protest was held at her home earlier this week following those remarks.