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Baltimore woman dies after standoff with police

An hours-long standoff with Baltimore County police on Monday ended with the fatal shooting of a 23-year-old woman, Korryn Gaines, and the injuring of her 5-year-old son in their suburban Baltimore apartment.

The shooting sparked outrage among activists in the city where all charges recently were dropped in the case of Freddie Gray, who died in police custody.

The police arrived at Gaines’ home Monday morning to serve two warrants, one to Gaines for a traffic violation in March as well as failure to show up to court, and another warrant for assault to a man identified as Kareem Courtney, 39, who tried to flee the scene with a 1-year-old child and was captured by police.

Baltimore County Police Chief Jim Johnson said at a press conference Monday that officers entered the apartment with a key after no one responded to their knocking for 10 minutes. When they entered, they found Gaines sitting on the floor holding her child in one hand and a shotgun in the other.

After hours of dialogue, around 3 p.m., Gaines threatened police by telling them that if they did not leave she would open fire. A police officer fired a single shot and Gaines fired back, CNN reported. Officers then shot and killed Gaines. Her son was injured in the crossfire. He was taken to the hospital and reported to be in good condition.

The Baltimore County government website published an account of the shooting and said the investigation is continuing.

The incident also unfolded on social media. Gaines was well-known on her social media outlets for being vocal about police brutality and America’s history of institutional racism.


Gaines recorded to Facebook parts of her encounter with police, along with a video of her son, up to the point where they entered her home and began speaking with her. The videos have since been removed. The video below appeared to be edited from her footage and could not be verified:

Activists, many linked to Black Lives Matter, are questioning why the police didn’t use non-lethal force. And many on social media, using the hashtag #SayHerName, are comparing Monday’s shooting to the 2015 death of Sandra Bland, who was found hanging in her jail cell in Texas.

The #SayHerName campaign was started by the African American Policy Forum to draw attention particularly to black women who have died in encounters with police.

Another report on the Baltimore government’s website said the police officers involved were placed on administrative leave, and it was unclear if they were wearing body cameras.

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