“This is a downright tragedy. Walter Wallace, Jr., a resident of my district, was shot to death by police while his mother stood steps away. I extend my deepest condolences to her, and to all of this young man’s family and friends. Our whole community is mourning his loss tonight.
“I am calling on the Philadelphia Police Department to immediately release the body camera footage of the officers involved in this incident. The public deserves a full, unvarnished accounting of what took place today.
“We must acknowledge that things did not need to play out this way. Resorting to the use of a service weapon should be the absolute last resort for any officer.
“Had these officers employed de-escalation techniques and non-lethal weapons rather than making the split-second decision to fire their guns, this young man might still have his life tonight. Had these officers valued the life of this Black man — had they treated him as a person experiencing mental health issues, instead of a criminal — we might be spared our collective outrage at yet another injustice at the hands of police.
“In this moment of reckoning and pain for West Philly, we need accountability, we need justice, and we need it now.”