WEST HAVEN, CT (WFSB) – State police on Friday released footage of a fatal officer-involved shooting Wednesday night in West Haven.
A teenager was shot and killed by a state police trooper on Wednesday night in West Haven.
It all happened following a reported carjacking in Norwalk.
As the state investigates the shooting, the family of 19-year-old Mubarak Soulemane says they’re filled with grief and plenty of questions.
Soulemane’s brother says it’s hard to believe. He told Channel 3 that police officers knocked on his door early Thursday morning breaking the news that his brother was dead.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Public Safety says they will be as transparent as possible, along with releasing the trooper’s body camera video in the near future.
“The type of person that just wanted to see everyone smile, wanted to put a smile on everyone’s face,” said Saeed Soulemane, Mubarak’s brother.
For Saeed, the past few days have been extremely hard. He says his brother had mental health issues, dealing with Schizophrenia, but wasn’t a violent person.
According to state police, he stole a car at knife point in Norwalk Wednesday afternoon. Police then observed him traveling at high speeds on I-95, driving on the shoulder and the center median, even hitting two state police cruisers.
Police said Mubarak got off at exit 43 and hit another car before troopers boxed him in.
They tried tasing him and police say when he displayed a knife, that’s when Trooper Brian North fired his gun.
"He was in a car, he was shot sitting down in the car. That doesn't make sense to us, so we want some answers," said Tahir Mohammad, Mubarak's uncle.
While local New Haven pastors want the U.S. Attorney’s Office to investigate, body and dash cam video from the troopers on scene will hopefully provide those answers and the state’s public safety commissioner says it will all be released soon saying, “Staff is working to get the video and much more info out to the community well ahead of the 96-hour mandate. We hope that the release of the information provides the transparency and some of the answers out community deserves.”
“It’s tragic that the officer did it, but it’s more of a tragedy that this young man is dead, killed,” said Reverend Dr. Boise Kimber, First Calvary Baptist Church.
The ACLU-CT released a statement on the shooting saying that state police should not conduct the investigation saying, "Police cannot police themselves. Yet state police have been assigned to investigate themselves for chasing, shooting, and killing Mubarak Soulemane. It is critically important for the investigation into Soulemane’s death at the hands of Connecticut State Police to be conducted by an independent law enforcement agency, not the same agency whose employees chased and killed him. The Division of Criminal Justice has the power to assign a different police agency to investigate Soulemane’s death, and they should. A local police department typically does not conduct the investigation when one of its employees hurts or kills someone, and the Connecticut State Police should not do so, either."
The NAACP-CT also released a statement saying, "Police violence against Black and Latinx people is a pandemic in Connecticut, and it must end. Whether a car chase, tasing, beating, or gunshot, every time police harm or kill someone in our state, they harm families and communities. We call on the state to assign a different police agency to investigate this case, because the state police cannot and should not be left to investigate themselves."
Mubarak's family is expected to meet with the state's public safety commissioner on Monday morning.