"I Wanted It To Go Viral": Philando Castile's Girlfriend On Live-Streaming Fatal Officer-Involved Shooting
Diamond "Lavish" Reynolds said she live-streamed the aftermath of a fatal shooting by a police officer to show the world "police are not here to serve and protect."
Diamond "Lavish" Reynolds, the woman who live-streamed the aftermath of a fatal police shooting in which her boyfriend, Philando Castile, was killed, said Thursday that she recorded the incident because she wanted "everybody in the world to see what the police do and how they roll."
Reynolds' graphic Facebook Live video showed a bleeding Castile sitting in the car after a police officer shot him during a traffic stop about 9 p.m. Wednesday in Falcon Heights, Minnesota. Castile later died in a hospital.
In another Facebook Live video Thursday, Reynolds said that she decided to live-stream the incident because she wanted it to go "viral" in order show the world that "police are not here to protect and serve us. They are here to assassinate us."
"I wanted everyone in the world to know how much [the police] tamper with evidence and how much they manipulate our minds. I wanted it to go viral so that people could determine themselves as to what was right and what was wrong."
Reynolds said that she, Castile, and her 4-year-old daughter were in the car returning from picking up groceries when they were stopped by a police officer who questioned them about a broken tail light.
She said that the officer asked Castile for his license and registration and, as Castile reached into his pocket for his ID, he informed the officer that he was carrying a licensed firearm. She said the officer then shot him in the arm, and as he lay bleeding in the car the officer, he continued to point the gun at him while Reynolds live-streamed the scene.
"He killed him for no reason," an emotional Reynolds said Thursday. "He was never a bad man. He was the quietest, most laid-back person. Nothing in his body language said 'intimidation.' Nothing in his body language said 'shoot me.' Nothing in his body language said 'kill me.'"
She said that after the officer shot him, "nobody checked his pulse," and that the officer was "still standing there with his gun still drawn after he was shot."
Reynolds said that another officer who was on her side walked away to call for backup. She added that other officers pulled the cop who fired the weapon to the side and told him "he would be ok and he would get through this." Reynolds said the officer was "crying" after he shot Castile and that he yelled, "Fuck, oh my god, I can't believe it, I can't believe it." In the video, the officer is heard yelling, "Fuck. I told him not to reach for it. I told him get his hand off it."
She said that she was informed that Castile had died only at 3 a.m. on Thursday and that she arrived home after being questioned by authorities at 5 a.m. She also said that authorities sent her to the wrong hospital instead of the Hennepin County Medical Center where Castile was transported and where he later died.
"They sent me in the wrong direction," she said. "I never got to see him. I never got to say my last words to that man."
While news outlets reported Castile's age as 32, Reynolds said that he was nine days away from his 35th birthday.
"It's not OK. A good man, a 35- year-old man who had never been fingerprinted, never been handcuffed. He has been taken away from his community," Reynolds said.