The deadly confrontation that played out on a Euclid street last March, between Officer Matthew Rhodes and Luke Stewart has garnered more controversy.
Rhodes said he shot Stewart when he tried to drive off. Rhodes shot Stewart five times: once in his neck, once on his hand, and three shots to his chest.
"I stand for my cousin. I believe that my cousin was murdered by Officer Mathew Rhodes, said Jocelyn Smith. "Look at likes face. He was beat. You see the gash over his eye? That mark on his face."
Police received a 9-1-1 call, reporting a suspicious vehicle. The responding officers thought Stewart may have been intoxicated.
"Luke was asleep in his car. What crime did he commit," asked Smith."
Rhodes said he approached while a fellow officer struggled to pull Stewart out of the vehicle. Police said when Stewart started the engine, put it in drive, and then Rhodes jumped into the car, and used his Taser six times. Rhodes eventually started shooting.
"The grand jury decided not to indict the officer that killed their loved one, Luke Stewart," said Stewart’s family attorney, Sarah Gelsomino. "There was no allegation of a crime. He was startled, understandably so. There’s also the possibly of Civil Rights litigation. It's impossible to quantify the value of a life."
Euclid's Police Chief, Scott Meyer released this statement:
The Euclid Police Department asks for peace as the difficult healing process begins for family and loved ones of Luke Stewart, Officer Matthew Rhodes, and the City of Euclid. We extend our deepest sympathy to all those affected by this terrible event.
Stewart’s family will hold a news conference at Euclid’s City Hall at 3:30 on Wednesday.