DETROIT – Protests broke out across Detroit after 20-year-old Hakim Littleton was shot and killed just after 12:30 p.m. by police.
An angry crowd gathered and marched on the 12th Precinct after rumors of Detroit police gunning down an unarmed man spread like wildfire.
That evening, police chief James Craig released video that showed Littleton fire on officers first.
According to authorities, Detroit police gang squad members approached Darnell Sylvester. He was wanted on a federal drug warrant and gave himself up without incident.
Next to Sylvester was Littleton, who pulled out a handgun and fires twice at an advancing officer. Littleton was killed almost instantly when officers fired at him.
Craig said a witness heard Littleton say he was not going to let police take Sylvester.
Body camera footage shows Littleton firing twice at the advancing officer, missing both times. The officer didn’t flinch and attempted to tackle Littleton before he was fired upon by other officers. Craig described the officer as an American hero.
“Despite being fired upon -- and you saw it with your own eyes -- he continued to advance,” Craig said. “He doesn’t even have time to take out his weapon. He wanted to serve, putting his own life in jeopardy.”
The chief said the officer is a little shaken up as Littleton aimed as his head.
All Friday afternoon, social media posts popped up that claimed none of that happened, that Littleton was unarmed and killed by police execution style.
“I was deeply concerned over the erroneous information,” Craig said. “I’ve asked repeatedly to give us a chance.”
Craig said the incident was a part of an investigation into a shooting at a block party that injured eight people.