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News > World

Justice Dept Won't Investigate Castile's Death at Traffic Stop

  • Philando Castile, 32, was shot and killed on Wednesday.

    Philando Castile, 32, was shot and killed on Wednesday. | Photo: Castile Family

Published 7 July 2016

“Would this have happened if the driver were white, if the passengers were white?” said Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton on Thursday.

The U.S. Justice Department refused to investigate the murder of Philando Castile in Minnesota, shot dead by a police officer after reportedly being pulled over for a broken tail light in Falcon Heights on Wednesday.

Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton requested the department intervene on Thursday after meeting with White House officials, who said they supported the state's investigation.

“Would this have happened if the driver were white, if the passengers were white?” said Dayton in a news conference. “I don’t think it would have.”

Castile was shown bleeding in his car in a graphic video shot by his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds. In the video, Reynolds says that Castile was asked for his license and registration and revealed to police that he had a gun in his possession and had a conceal carry permit for the weapon. She also says that Castile was shot four times, with a child in the car.

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President Barack Obama also delivered a speech on Thursday, saying the death was a matter of "outrage, not just political corrrectness."

"Step back and ask, 'What if this happened to someone in your family, how would you feel?'" he said.

Obama also published a statement on his Facebook on Thursday, saying: "What’s clear is that these fatal shootings are not isolated incidents. They are symptomatic of the broader challenges within our criminal justice system, the racial disparities that appear across the system year after year, and the resulting lack of trust that exists between law enforcement and too many of the communities they serve.”

WATCH: The Daily Brief: Protesters March On Minnesota Governor'S Home

Reynolds was arrested and taken into police custody. Many in the community as well as online are outraged and are calling for her release. A crowd also gathered at the scene of the shooting, calling police "terrorists."

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St. Anthony Police confirmed that the shooting took place and Castile’s family confirmed that he died from his wounds at the Hennepin County Medical Center.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating the shooting, according to CBS Minnesota.

Around 100 protesters gathered at around 2 a.m. at the residence of Gov. Mark Dayton chanting "wake up," and "no justice, no peace," according to the Star Tribune.

The shooting comes a day after police in Louisiana executed an unarmed 37-year old Black man named Alton Sterling. At least 560 people have been killed by U.S. police this year, according to The Guardian, the majority of them people of color.

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