Watch: District Attorney Says Police Shooting of Trans Suspect 16 Times 'Reasonable Force'

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Friday September 25, 2020

Roxanne Moore
Roxanne Moore  (Source:Screen cap/CBS3)

According to the Bucks County DA, police officers in Reading, Pennsylvania, who opened fire on a trans woman, firing 16 rounds and striking her "multiple times," were exercising "reasonable force" and will be allowed to return resume their jobs, reports the New York Daily News.

Roxanne Moore survived but remains in critical condition in a hospital. A demonstration in Reading to protest the shooting took place on Sept. 20 and drew more than 50 supporters, including Moore's family members, reported local newspaper the Reading Eagle.

The shooting took place on Sept. 13 when police in Reading responded to a 911 call. Media accounts say that Moore had been involved in an argument in her apartment and had gotten hold of a gun. By the time police arrived, Moore had run outside, where she pistol-whipped and threatened a man with the gun, CBS3 in Philadelphia reported. As police approached, Moore aimed the gun at a police car, then at an officer, and did not comply with commands to drop the weapon, the Daily News reported.

The police fired 16 rounds and Moore was hit "multiple times," the Daily News reported.

It was later determined that Moore could not have fired the weapon she was holding because of a locking safety feature. The officers on the scene were unaware of this, however.

Moore's family said that she suffers from mental illness, the Eagle reported. A local activist at the gathering, Jane Palmer, suggested that race and gender identity played a part in how the situation unfolded.

"Do Black people ever get the benefit of the doubt in a situation involving the police?' Palmer asked. "Add trans or gender-nonconforming on top of that, and you're in real trouble."

After investigating the incident, Bucks Country DA John Adams "determined that the shooting was a reasonable use of force, which is justified under the law here in Pennsylvania," Adams told the press on Sept. 23.

Watch the CBS3 news clip below.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Assistant Arts Editor. He also reviews theater for WBUR. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.

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