SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – After viewing the video of Alonzo Bagley’s death at the hands of Shreveport Police Officer Alexander Tyler, the attorney representing the Bagley’s family said he will amend the federal lawsuit against Tyler to include the City of Shreveport and the Shreveport Police Department.
Ron Haley of Haley and Associates, the attorney representing the Bagley family, said the shooting was “absolutely unnecessary” after Louisiana State Police released the video footage Thursday just before noon. Haley said Bagley’s death was another non-violent call turned deadly.
Haley believes SPD and city leadership must send the right message to citizens in the aftermath of Bagley’s shooting. The video shows the 66-second encounter from when police arrived on the scene until the fatal shooting.
“What should be non-violent encounters that end violently usually end with a Black or brown person at the short end of the stick.”
Bagley’s estate seeks a $10M judgment against Tyler; the amended lawsuit will include the city and SPD. However, Haley said that the monetary judgment is only a portion of what he and the family are seeking.
“Money should not give way to human decency,” Haley said. “What is maddening is that you must be the exceptional Black person to survive a police interaction.”
Haley went on to list the myriad of ways that shootings of unarmed Black men have been justified in the past. Those justifications range from the person’s prior arrest history, the neighborhood in which the person lives, or other implicit biases that can often lead to fatal encounters with law enforcement.
None of those are justifications, according to Haley, who is calling on local, state, and federal changes in law enforcement use of force procedures. Haley said to end the shooting of unarmed persons by police, a unified use of force standard must be applied across all law enforcement agencies.
Xavier Sudds, Bagley’s brother, said the incident has left the family with indescribable pain.
“The immediate emotion was hurt, quickly followed by anger,” Sudds said. “Trying to understand how a domestic call turned deadly. Why did he (Officer Tyler) need to have a gun drawn? Everybody that watched the footage felt hurt.”
As Sudds prepares to bury his brother on Saturday, he reluctantly advocates for change in his brother’s name.
“The bigger picture is that I am not only advocating for my family; I’m advocating for the community and Black men around the nation,” Sudds said.
Sudds said the family is a strong united front with the help of Haley and his associates and community advocacy groups, but individually, they are hurting.
Haley said that while Shreveport Police Chief Wayne Smith and members of the Shreveport City Council did visit with Bagley’s family the day after the fatal shooting, there has been no follow-up with the family.
“They have been in the dark,” Haley said.
Haley did commend the Louisiana State Police and Col. Lamar Davis for keeping his word by conducting a swift and judicious investigation.
“I think this is a step in the right direction,” Haley said. “It would be wrong for me not to say that.
The full video of Bagley’s encounter with Shreveport police can be viewed in the video player.