Early Tuesday morning, black retired law enforcement official David Dorn was shot dead while responding to a burglary alarm at Lee’s Pawn & Jewelry in north St. Louis, which was targeted by looters during George Floyd protests. The aftermath of the deadly shooting was captured on Facebook Live.
“Things escalated at the Lee’s Pawn and Jewelry shop, where the man was killed, and to see his body, I mean, on Facebook, it was almost like — you know that’s how we’ve seen George Floyd’s body, and you know that’s not the change that we are pushing for,” said District State Representative Rasheen Aldridge, who witnessed the shooting on Facebook Live, according to the St. Louis Dispatch.
The brutal killing of a member of the African American community during protests that are ostensibly about ending violence against blacks has raised difficult questions, including about how the riots have spun out of control and done far more damage than good.
Facebook originally took the video down of Dorn’s murder, but then put it back up, as the company said it did not violate any of their policies on graphic content.
The graphic video is still circulating on Twitter and shows Dorn laying on the sidewalk where he is seen bleeding out from his wound.
This is disturbing ??
David Dorn was 77. He spent four decades protecting people as a police officer and then came out of retirement to keep serving as Moline Acres' police chief.
Looters shot him in the torso & he died bleeding out on a sidewalkpic.twitter.com/pMt9ooUSG3
— Mawufeasi (@Mawufeasi) June 3, 2020
In the video, as people loot in the background, the man tries to encourage Dorn, saying, “Oh cuz’, come on, OG … Come on, OG. Oh my God, cuz’.”
He then can be heard asking, “For a TV? They killed this old man for some TVs? C’mon, man, that’s somebody’s granddaddy.”
Following the tragedy, former St. Louis County Police Chief Tim Fitch called Dorn a “true public servant.”
President Donald Trump also shared a message on Twitter about Dorn in honor of the murdered ex-police officer.
Our highest respect to the family of David Dorn, a Great Police Captain from St. Louis, who was viciously shot and killed by despicable looters last night. We honor our police officers, perhaps more than ever before. Thank you! pic.twitter.com/0ouUpoJEQ4
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 3, 2020
According to St. Louis Police Chief John Hayden, 55 businesses, including the pawnshop reported damage to their shops after the night of protests tied to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
“During a looting process, David Dorn was exercising law enforcement training that he learned here, so in his honor, we are wearing our mourning bands,” said Hayden, adding that Dorn was a role model to many younger police officers
The 77-year-old Dorn, who retired in 2007 as a captain, served 38 years with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and retired in 2007 as a captain.
The police report states that officers received information about the shooting around 2:30 a.m. When they arrived at the pawnshop, they found the wounded Dorn on the sidewalk and pronounced him dead at the scene.
According to the Ward 4 committeeman Leroy Carter, Dorn frequented the business in this area and also served as a liaison between the business association and local police in the past. He was also a good friend of the pawnshop owner Lee Rascover.
Dorn’s wife, Sgt. Ann Marie Dorn, who works for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, told the St. Louis Dispatch that her husband was friend’s with the pawn shop owner and had often checked on the business in the past when the alarm went off.
Essentially, Dorn died protecting his community even after he decided to hang up his badge. As of now, there are no suspects in his murder.
A campaign to collect funds for Dorn’s family posted on Fundly has already raised over $220,000 at the time of writing. Although
Dorn was not the only black person killed during George Floyd protests
Dorn is one of a number of African Americans who have become victims of protests stemming from the death of George Floyd. Federal Protective Services officer Dave Patrick Underwood, a 53-year-old federal law enforcement officer, was shot while on duty during riots last Friday in Oakland.
Underwood was shot along with another law enforcement officer in an act that the FBI has deemed an act of “domestic terrorism”. While no motive has been established and no suspects are in custody, Underwood’s sister, Angela Jacob Underwood, used her Facebook page to post the following: “My brother, Dave Patrick Underwood, a federal officer, was murdered 5/29/20 in Oakland California, while on duty during the riots,” she wrote. “This Violence Must Stop.”
Another African American, 38-year-old Chris Beaty, a former Indiana University football player, was killed at a demonstration related to the death of George Floyd. He was attending a demonstration when gunfire erupted, which resulted in Beaty being shot multiple times. Beaty was a well-known business leader in the Indianapolis community and ran several night clubs in the city.
Some took to social media to highlight the lack of coverage for those who were murdered during the George Floyd protests. Although news outlets have covered the murders of black citizens, the lack of coverage is remarkably minuscule and the murders have certainly garnered far less attention than the death of George Floyd, a fact that has not been missed by many users on social media.
Say their names! THEIR LIVES MATTERED! Unarmed men and woman who were senselessly MURDERED while protesting peacefully and trying to have their voices heard! The media doesn’t care because cops didn’t take their lives.#DavidDorn#DaveUnderwood#ItaliaKelly#ChrisBeaty pic.twitter.com/3NvbvvLcj0
— Josh T ??? (@PCNole813) June 4, 2020
Police officers targeted during George Floyd riots
Although Dorn was an ex-police officer, he still represents someone who was killed while attempting to enforce the law and protect property. A number of police officers have also been targeted during the violence stemming from the George Floyd riots.
In Buffalo, New York, two police officers were rammed by an SUV, with video showing the vehicle slamming officers while they were in the process of tackling and handcuffing a suspect. Another NYPD sergeant was also run over by a vehicle in the Bronx after he responded to mass looting taking place. He is in serious but stable condition. Footage of the attack was released by the NYPD to help identify the suspects.