'Don't shoot my son': Walter Wallace Jr.'s mom said she tried to defuse situation ahead of fatal shooting

Christie Ileto Image
Wednesday, October 28, 2020
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The mother of Walter Wallace Jr. said Tuesday that she pleaded with police officers before they shot and killed her son.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The mother of Walter Wallace Jr. said Tuesday that she pleaded with police officers before they shot and killed her son.

"I was telling police to stop. Don't shoot my son, please don't shoot my son," Catherine Wallace said Tuesday night.

Wallace Jr., 27, a Black man who police say was armed with a knife, was killed Monday after police fired more than a dozen shots on the 6100 block of Locust Street in West Philadelphia around 3:50 p.m.

"They paid me no mind, and shot my son," she said.

Wallace Jr.'s parents said their son suffered from mental health issues and that police had been called to the home earlier in the day before it turned deadly.

"I can't even sleep at night, every time I close my eyes I got flashbacks of multiple shots," said Walter Wallace Sr.

Many are left wondering if this shooting could have been avoided.

READ MORE: Philadelphia police on alert amid civil unrest following fatal police shooting of Walter Wallace

"How do you feel to make the 911 call to get help for your son and the end result is murder," said Wallace Jr.'s cousin, Anthony Fitzhugh.

"You could have pulled out a taser. You could have shot him in the leg," said resident Jada Hilton.

Authorities say the officers did not have tasers. They said not all Philadelphia officers carry them.

Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said Tuesday she has already asked in the past that additional funding be added to the budget for tasers.

RAW VIDEO: Video shows officers yelling 'put the knife down' before fatal shooting

Wallace Jr.'s death sparked both protests and looting for a second night on Tuesday.

"Burning down people's businesses, looting, stealing -- that's not the answer. That's not the solution," said Fitzhugh.

WATCH: Neighbors, business owners frustrated after night of unrest in West Philadelphia

Outlaw has promised a full and comprehensive investigation.

The department is completing a threat assessment on whether to release the names of the officers involved. Outlaw said the names would be released as long as that does not put the officers' safety at risk.