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Sacramento Mayor Says Stephon Clark Shooting Investigation Will Be Done ‘Very, Very Soon’
Updated 4:51 p.m.
Sacramento and state law enforcement’s investigation into the fatal police shooting of Stephon Clark could conclude in the near future, according to Mayor Darrell Steinberg.
“As I understand it, the investigation will be wrapped up very, very soon,” Steinberg said on Tuesday in an interview with CapRadio.
Two police officers killed Clark on the night of March 18 in South Sacramento following a complaint about a man breaking car windows. They pursued Clark into a backyard, which was later discovered to be the home of Clark’s grandparents.
The officers, whose names have not been made public by the department, shot at Clark, a black man, 20 times, after they thought he had a gun. Police only discovered a cell phone near his body.
The investigation into the shooting has been conducted by the Sacramento Police Department, the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office, and the state Department of Justice, which was brought in to help with the investigation at the request of police Chief Daniel Hahn.
Steinberg said the investigation is in its “final stages” nearly six months after Clark’s death.
The mayor said he understands the public’s “anxiousness and frustration" with the time its taken to investigate. But he wants it to be thorough.
"People will know that the thousands of hours on the forensic side, that all that work has been done the right way,” Steinberg said.
The mayor added that he was pleased that lawmakers sent Senate Bill 1421 to Gov. Jerry Brown earlier this month. If signed, the bill would require law enforcement to make public records from officer shootings and use-of-force incidents, which previously had been withheld.
"One of the most troubling things about the current process is that, even at the end of an investigation, the public doesn't have a right to see or to know, and that's not right,” Steinberg said.
Police department spokesperson Sgt. Vance Chandler said that the case “is still being investigated” and that it “hasn’t been handed off” to either the DA or AG offices.
Chandler added that when it is finalized and sent to those agencies for review, the department will make an announcement.
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