The video (embedded below) from the Facebook account of Tilia Tequila shows Diamond Reynolds describing her ordeal after Reynolds’ viral Facebook video gained the attention of the world.
As reported by Slate, Diamond spoke at the press conference on Thursday, July 7. Reynolds was the girlfriend of Philando Castile, a man who could be seen in a graphic and viral Facebook Live video after being shot by a police officer in Falcon Heights, Minnesota.
In the version of Tequila’s Facebook video, which is more than 21 minutes long, Diamond describes not being offered any water or food by the police after they took her into custody.
Reynolds said that police took over her Facebook account and took her phone for evidence. They also confiscated her groceries and seized her car as evidence.
In the long and emotional video, Reynolds pleads for peace and justice. Diamond noted that some police officers have emotional and mental problems that she wants to see resolved before they are allowed on the streets. Reynolds claimed that the officers who were supposed to protect and serve the community were the same ones who only comforted each other after Philando was shot and killed.
“All the police officers were for each other.”
Diamond claimed that the officer who shot Philando began cursing after he fired five bullets into her boyfriend. Reynolds said that another officer called for backup, and they comforted one another. According to Diamond, the officers did not check Philando’s pulse or offer him any sort of assistance after shooting him.
Instead, Diamond credited her 4-year-old daughter with praying for her mother and keeping Reynolds calm enough to pull out her phone and use the last seconds she had left to record the now-viral Facebook video, showing Philando bleeding to death.
Diamond said that she dared not pull out her phone when the officer was shooting Philando, because she feared he would have shot Diamond to death as well. But Reynolds said she wanted the world to see what the police did to her boyfriend, a man she described as one who was not gang-affiliated in any way and was a hard worker.
Reynolds described picking up groceries with Philando after he had gotten a haircut in preparation for his birthday. Diamond said her boyfriend was looking forward to turning 35 years of age in about one week. The duo were traveling south when the police officer stopped them, claiming they had either a broken taillight or headlight.
Diamond claimed that they did not have either a broken taillight or headlight, as the officer claimed. Reynolds said the officer asked if either of them knew about the broken light. When they said they didn’t know about the broken light, Diamond and Philando were instructed by the officer to put their hands in the air and to turn over their license and registration.
“I can’t do two things at one time.”
It was a confusing command, said Diamond, leaving Reynolds to wonder how they could keep their hands in the air and also reach for their registration. Diamond said Philando reached for his wallet while Reynolds informed the officer that Philando was licensed to carry a gun. It was at this point that Diamond said the officer shot five times at Philando, killing him.
With the new press conference making the rounds on Facebook, people are reacting in a myriad of ways to Diamond’s words. Some of those reactions can be read below.
“Not 1 shot, not 2, not 3, not 4, 5 shots! For no reason! How can 1 man put his hands in the air + reach for ID.”
“My heart is so heavy. Sending love to Diamond Reynolds and her baby girl. I am so sorry.”
Diamond cried outside of the governor’s residence in St. Paul, Minnesota while talking to the public.
[Photo by Jim Mone/AP Images]