Seventeen-year-old Antwon Rose of Rankin, Pennsylvania, was shot and killed by Pittsburgh police as he fled the scene of a traffic stop Tuesday night. A police officer had pulled over the car in which Antwon was a passenger in connection with a shooting.
Police say they received reports of a shooting in East Braddock about 8:20 Tuesday night. Officers responded to the scene where they found a 22-year-old victim. Witnesses reported seeing a car with a description that fit the car in which Rose was a passenger leaving the area. The East Pittsburgh officer who first saw his car also noticed it had bullet damage to its rear window.
Superintendent Coleman McDonough said that the officer ordered the driver to get out of the car and lay on the ground. Antwon and another passenger exited the vehicle and took off running. The police officer fired at the passengers and struck one of them, Antwon Rose. He was taken to the hospital and declared dead at 9:19 p.m.
Allegheny County police held a press conference Wednesday and stated that three shots were fired at the teen. They struck him in “various places on his body.” McDonough wouldn’t confirm whether any of those places included the teen’s back. He said that more details will be released by the medical examiner at a later time.
Officers found two guns in the vehicle, but the driver was interviewed and released with no charges filed against them. The whereabouts of the other runner are not known, but police believe they were struck by a bullet and are asking for them to come forward and assist police in piecing together what happened during the traffic stop.
McDonough voiced concern about the aftermath of Antwon’s death.
“I understand that in today’s atmosphere, any time a young man is killed, there is cause for outrage in some areas… Social media is so prolific… Some of the initial postings that came out directly after this incident were inaccurate and inflammatory, so I would urge that people in the community give us a chance to conduct an objective investigation, and I guarantee that’s what they’ll get from the Allegheny County police.”
One social media posting following the incident was a video of the shooting that was posted to Facebook. McDonough acknowledged that he had seen it but warned against extrapolating too much from it. He indicated it would be part of the investigation into the events related to the incident. Neither the officer involved in the traffic stop nor his vehicle was equipped with a camera, according to the superintendent. The identity of the officer has not been released, but they have been put on paid leave while an investigation is conducted.