OAKLAND -- The unarmed man shot and killed by police Monday night suffered multiple gunshot wounds but was only hit in the front of his body, an independent autopsy revealed Wednesday.
Police said Derrick Jones, a 37-year-old Oakland father of one, was shot after he reached for his waistband during a police chase, prompting officers to think he was reaching for a weapon. The officers had been sent to a domestic violence call by a woman who said she'd been in a fight with Jones at his barber shop in the 5800 block of Bancroft Avenue.
Police said Jones told the officers he was someone else and tried to flee, at which point one of the officers shot him with a Taser. The stun was ineffective and Jones continued
The officers said Jones' hand movement was consistent with someone reaching for a weapon. Jones, however, was found to be carrying neither a knife nor a gun. Police have not said what objects he was carrying.
Rumors had spread among Jones' friends and family Tuesday that Jones was shot in the back, but an autopsy by the Alameda County Coroner's Office revealed he was not.
Civil rights attorney John Burris, well known for high-profile cases against police officers involving civil rights violations, said Wednesday that Jones' family had contacted him and that he was investigating the shooting to determine if police did anything
"If this happened how the officers say it did, it doesn't make sense," Burris said. "I can't imagine a person who's trying to get away from police, running full speed, doing all he can to get away, he stops and gets stuck at the fence.
"Then puts his hand in a place where any black man knows you never do with cops, reaches to his waist band and has no weapon there. "... It just doesn't make sense."
Burris said he has interviewed several people, including two witnesses to the shooting. One of them had no view of Jones when he was shot, but the other contradicted the police version of the story and said Jones did not reach for his waistband, Burris said.
Authorities said the ongoing independent investigations conducted by internal affairs, homicide police and the Alameda County District Attorney's Office had found witnesses that confirm the officers' version of the story, but that police would like to talk with Burris' witness.
Anyone with information is asked to call police at 510-238-3821.