TACOMA, Wash. -- A Tacoma man told Q13 News that he is related to Alton Sterling, the man shot and killed by police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Derrick Crocklem said he is heartbroken over his cousin’s death. Derrick said he had been visiting with his cousin, Sterling, only three weeks ago.
“That little time we spent together three weeks ago, it hurts,” said Crocklem. “I never thought something like this would happen to him.”
Crocklem said he would always remember Alton as a man who tried to love his family and make everyone around him laugh.
“I look at him like a brother cause that’s the way we was raised,” he said.
On Tuesday morning, Sterling was shot and killed by a Baton Rouge police officer. After two officers police tackled Sterling onto his back, one officer pulled a gun and shot him.
“Clearly it shows in the video he wasn’t resisting at all,” said Crocklem. “He’s laying there.”
On Wednesday night, Crocklem joined dozens of people for a vigil at Tacoma’s People’s Park to denounce the shooting.
Derrick said at first he didn’t believe his family when they called him to tell him Alton had been shot and killed by police.
But he finally believed it when he saw the graphic footage of Alton’s death posted on social media.
“For him to put six shots in his chest, that was uncalled for,” Crocklem said of the police officers. “No man should get shot like that.”
Crocklem added that he and his family are demanding justice for what happened to his cousin.
“We want the officers to pay for what they done to him,” he said. “That’s what we want. We want them to pay for that.”