Security video captures encounter before officer fatally shot student
MOBILE, Ala. — Video of the fatal shooting of a naked Alabama college student shows him with his arms outstretched and his palms open seconds before a campus police officer fired.
The Mobile County Sheriff's Department played the approximately two-minute security video for media on Thursday. It was taken by a security camera outside the University of South Alabama police station, where 18-year-old Gil Collar was fatally shot early Saturday morning. The video has no sound.
Police said Collar had taken LSD and was acting aggressively, but an attorney for Collar's family said the video shows his actions didn't justify the shooting. The former high school wrestler was struck once in the chest.
On the video, Collar walks slowly toward a campus police station door once and then walks away. Seconds later, he walks back to the station and pounds violently on a glass window. He then walks away from the police station again before an officer, Trevis Austin, comes out with his gun drawn and pointed at the naked student. Collar approaches Austin with his arms outstretched and palms open toward Austin.
They move around the porch, with Collar kneeling at one point, then getting to his feet and again walking toward Austin. The officer keeps backing away from Collar, his gun pointed at the student, as Collar approaches. The two move into the yard, where the view of the camera is partially blocked by the porch columns and lighting. Less than 30 seconds after Austin came out of the building, the video shows Collar falling after having been shot. The police dispatcher can be seen opening the station's front door in response to the sound of gunfire. A second officer arrives just as Collar is being shot. Collar gets up twice and the officers pursue him.
Sheriff Sam Cochran said two officers handcuffed Collar to subdue him after he was shot, but that could not be clearly seen on the video.
“In my opinion it was proper to come out with the gun,” Mobile County Sheriff Sam Cochran said.
He said numerous police officers have been killed with their own weapons and that it is important for an officer to make sure a suspect isn't able to take control of a weapon. Collar did not touch Austin but got as close as five feet to the pointed gun before Austin fired.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Shuster admits to ‘personal relationship’ with airline industry lobbyist
- Truck carrying 13.7M bees overturns
- Federal appeals court appears divided on Obama’s immigrant deportation shield
- Cardinal Francis George of Chicago dead at 78
- Work crew triggers Calif. blast
- Foggy Interstate 70 pileup injures dozen in Colorado
- Accused terror plotter pleads not guilty in Ohio
- Scientists: Oil spill has harmed health of Gulf of Mexico
- Federal judge who blocked Obama immigration order painted as unbiased
- Social media makes it difficult for ‘hero’ to stay anonymous
- Collection gives insight into Oklahoma City federal building bomber McVeigh