Skip to main content

Why are the billionaires always laughing?

Because they know the corporate media will never call bullshit on their bullshit.

Anthony Hill, center, served in the Air Force in Iraq. (Credit: Anthony Hill family photos)

In Latest Police Killing of Black Man, Victim Was Both Unarmed and Mentally Ill

Anthony Hill, 27, is the third unarmed African-American shot dead by police in last five days

Deirdre Fulton

A white, Atlanta-area police officer shot dead a naked, unarmed, and reportedly mentally ill African-American Air Force veteran at his apartment complex in Chamblee, Georgia on Monday, the third fatal police shooting of an unarmed black man in the last five days.

Witnesses said the victim, 27-year-old Anthony Hill, was acting erratically before the shooting—knocking on doors and swinging from a balcony—which led onlookers to call 911.

A maintenance man at the complex told the New York Times that Hill "was naked and on all fours in the parking lot when the police officer, who is white, arrived in his squad car, parking a good distance away."

The Times continued:

When Mr. Hill saw the officer, Mr. Castillo said, he stood up and moved toward him with his hands raised, and the officer, obviously frightened, yelled for him to stop. Mr. Castillo said that he had not seen a scuffle, but that he did see the officer pull out the handgun and shoot Mr. Hill.

The DeKalb County police officer has been identified as seven-year force veteran Robert Olsen. DeKalb County deputy chief operating officer for public safety, Cedric Alexander, told reporters on Monday that Olsen was armed with both a handgun and a Taser at the time of the shooting.

"What circumstance would have been more appropriate to use a Taser than this one in which you are 100 percent sure the man you are approaching is completely unarmed?" asked Daily Kos writer Shaun King. "It must have been obvious that Anthony was struggling through a psychotic episode of some sort. If this officer was trained to deal with those struggling with mental illness, as Dekalb County claims, what in his training did he use here? It appears nothing at all."

Hill—who played music under the name Ant Lanta, served in Iraq, and attended the University of South Carolina—had recently commented on the growing Black Lives Matter movement on social media.

Earlier this year, ACLU disability counsel Susan Mizner wrote about "people with psychiatric disabilities—most of them people of color—shot and killed by police."

"In many cases, police were responding to requests for assistance to get the person mental health care," she pointed out.

However, she added: "People with disabilities face violent and deadly consequences when law enforcement does not take disabilities into account. It is not okay to take a deaf person down for failing to follow verbal orders. It is not okay to attack someone with autism because he is slow to respond to instruction. It is not okay to treat a woman with a mental disability as if she were a dangerous criminal."

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is examining Hill's shooting, and Olsen was placed on administrative leave pending the results of the probe.

Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

'Bombshell': Total Knew About Climate Threat From Fossil Fuels for Decades, But Denied It

"The dire consequences of climate change we are now experiencing could have been avoided if Total executives 50 years ago had decided that the future of the planet is more important than their profits."

Jessica Corbett ·

Report Details 'Dangerous Trajectory' of Countries' Fossil Fuel Production Plans

"World leaders need to put their resources where their rhetoric has been—stopping the extraction of oil and gas and directing attention to how we will finance the transition to climate justice instead," said one campaigner.

Julia Conley ·

'This Is Sick': Cable Companies Refuse to Air Ad Criticizing Corporate Donors to Florida's Abortion Opponents

"Corporate America protecting itself from being called out for supporting candidates that want to ban abortion in Florida," is how state Rep. Anna Eskamani summarized Comcast and Spectrum's decision.

Kenny Stancil ·

Sanders to Host "What's in the Damn Bill" Online Panel Discussion About Democrats' Package

The Senate Budget Committee chair will be joined by other progressive lawmakers and leaders at 8:00 pm Wednesday.

Common Dreams staff ·

Don't Be Distracted by Possible Facebook Rebrand, Say Critics of Tech Behemoth

"Just to be clear, Facebook, our problem with you is not your name."

Brett Wilkins ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.

Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo