Five officers have been placed on leave after fatally shooting a man.
The family of 39-year-old Dana Sherrod Fletcher says they witnessed the officers shoot and kill Fletcher outside of a Planet Fitness in Madison, Ala. around 4:30 p.m. on Sunday. Police say they shot Fletcher after Madison County police officers responded to a “suspicious person” call from someone at the gym. WHNT reports that the caller said, “Fletcher and a woman were inside the gym videoing people and asking personal questions.”
According to police, Fletcher struggled with the officers, and the police tasered him.
“The less-than-lethal (taser) was not effective, and the struggling Fletcher exited the car with the gun in his hand and pointed at officers,” Madison County Sheriff Chief Deputy Stacy Bates said in a statement. “Two Madison police officers fired their weapons, and Fletcher was struck. The officers attempted first-aid on Fletcher, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.” However, the victim’s wife, Cherrelle Fletcher, posted her side of the story on facebook, and it contradicts what the police say happened. Cherrelle says her husband was unarmed and did nothing wrong.
“I am the wife of the victim that was shot and killed at planet fitness in madison al earlier,” the post begins. “I was sitting in the driver seat of the van during the entire incident,” Cherrelle added that the officer blocked Fletcher from closing his door and grabbed Dana as another officer released a dog. Meanwhile, another officer broke her window with a billy club and pulled her out of their car headfirst while she was holding their daughter. The child was injured in the process, Dana says. “AT NO POINT WAS HE ARMED,” Cherrelle writes. “HE WAS UNARMED DURING THE ENTIRE TIME. HE WAS UNARMED!” Cherrelle notes that Dana did not run and that his body was lying beside the vehicle after he was shot. “I saw the officers shoot him, and I saw his body on the ground covered in blood…There was no crimes committed. My family and I were there so I could work out.”
The officers were wearing body cameras and were immediately placed on leave. Police claim a nearby business has camera footage that shows Fletcher with a gun that was allegedly recovered at the scene. According to The Root, the Madison Police Department has turned over all evidence to an independent investigation agency: The Madison County Sheriff’s Department.