SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Protesters disrupted a meeting Tuesday of the Sacramento City Council held to accommodate residents wanting to discuss the shooting death of an unarmed black man by police.
Stephon Clark, 22, was fatally shot by police March 18 in his grandmother’s backyard. Officers said they initially thought he had a gun. He was holding a cellphone.
At Tuesday’s packed council meeting, Clark’s brother Stevante Clark jumped on the dais and demanded to speak, saying he didn’t think the council would make meaningful changes as a result of his brother’s death.
The council adjourned for roughly 15 minutes as a result of the disruption.
Protesters outside of City Hall forced their way into the atrium as metal detectors fell down.
Protesters later moved to Golden 1 Center, blocking the entrances to the arena. The Sacramento Kings were scheduled to play the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night.
The Kings released a statement saying the game would be delayed and the arena entrances were “temporarily closed.”
“Stand-by for further instructions as we coordinate safe entry to the building. We apologize for the inconvenience,” the statement said.
The game started a few minutes after the scheduled time,but the 17,600-seat arena was sparsely populated.
Earlier Tuesday, the California attorney general’s office said it is joining an investigation into the fatal shooting to provide independent oversight.
Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn announced the partnership Tuesday alongside Attorney General Xavier Becerra. He said he hopes it will build “faith and confidence” in the investigation.
“Due to the nature of this investigation, the extremely high emotions, anger and hurt in our city, I felt it was the best interest of our entire community, including the members of our police department, to ask the attorney general to be an independent part of this investigation,” Hahn said, according to the Associated Press.
Stephon Clark’s family said they are skeptical that there will be a proper investigation – even with the state attorney general involved. Stephon Clark’s uncle, Curtis Gordon, says the family will wait to see what results. He says it’s all talk at this point.
We’ll see what happens,” Gordon said. “It’s all talk at this point … Show me.”
On Monday, Stephon Clark's grandmother, Sequita Thompson, called for the police to change how they apply force in such situations and to consider non-lethal options.
“We fully expect that the attorney general’s office will do a complete and thorough investigation that is fair and impartial – and that extends due process not just to those being investigated, but equally to the family of Stephon Clark,” family attorney Benjamin Crump said in a statement.
Contributing: The Associated Press