Tennessee family speaks for first time after fatal officer-involved shooting

(Source: WKRN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – We’re hearing from Jocques Clemmons’ family for the first time. The 31-year-old was shot by a Metro officer during a traffic stop Friday and later died.

“Sleepless nights the past couple nights. It’s just been hard to sleep, hard to talk about it, you know,” Clemmons’ stepfather Karl Tate told WKRN.

He says the family feels like they are living a nightmare.

“We see this all the time, but you never expect it to happen to your own child.”

(Phoro: WKRN)
(Phoro: WKRN)

RELATED: Metro police: Man shot, killed by officer after traffic stop

Authorities said it began when Officer Josh Lippert, who was wearing a police uniform and driving an unmarked car, pulled over Clemmons for running a stop sign.

Police say Clemmons got out of the car and started a physical confrontation with the officer.

Video captured by the Cayce Homes reportedly showed Clemmons abruptly charging at Lippert and making full contact with him.

Police say Clemmons then ran through the parking lot while appearing to hold something in his waistband. Officer Lippert was able to catch him, but as he tried to arrest Clemmons, they reportedly had another physical altercation.

According to Metro police, Clemmons fell to the ground and dropped a fully loaded .357 magnum pistol.

Jocques Scott Clemmons (Source: GoFundMe)
Jocques Scott Clemmons (Source: GoFundMe)

PHOTOS: Man shot by officer at Cayce Homes

Lippert saw the weapon and tried to kick it away, but Clemmons reportedly grabbed the gun and picked it up.

Officials say he was given repeated commands to put down the weapon but did not comply.

That’s when Officer Lippert, who believed he was in imminent danger according to police, fired three times at Clemmons as he was turning to move between two parked cars.

Clemmons was hit in the lower left back by what’s believed to have been two rounds.

“He was running away from him, you know, clearly he was running away and they shot him in the back. I don’t know why he would run, but I’ll just put it this way: It’s against the law to shoot a man in the back. It’s against the law for the police to shoot anybody in the back,” Tate told News 2.

Family, friends and community members marched in Clemmons’ memory on Sunday. His children led the way with signs in hand.

“Jocques is a loving, very loving father. He was a good man, he was a good man,” said Tate.

The grieving family says they want justice.

“We just pray that the judicial system does the right thing.”

The officer involved is now on administrative assignment as the investigation continues.

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry released the following statement about the shooting:

Since Friday, I have been closely monitoring the officer involved shooting that resulted in the death of Jocques Clemmons. I appreciate that the MNPD has been forthcoming in quickly releasing information about the shooting. There will be a full and thorough investigation of all the facts in this case before any final judgements are rendered. My thoughts and prayers are with the friends and family of Mr. Clemmons and all those grieving his loss.”

A GoFundMe account has been set up for Clemmons’ funeral expenses.

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