Vonderrit Myers Jr. was shot eight times, including six times from behind, by an off-duty St. Louis police officer earlier this month, The Associated Press reported, citing an autopsy report by a forensic pathologist Thursday. Myers' death came nearly two months after a white police officer fatally shot another black teen, Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Missouri.
The independent autopsy, which was conducted by Dr. Cyril Wecht at the request of Myers’ family, reportedly revealed that the 18-year-old black teen was running away from the officer. It’s likely that Myers was shot six times in the back of both legs, Wecht reportedly said during a news conference. Wecht added that a wound to the side of Myers’ face likely caused his death.
"The evidence shows that the story we've been given by the Police Department does not match up," Jerryl Christmas, one of the family’s attorneys said, according to AP. "There's no evidence that there was a gun battle going on."
St. Louis police had reportedly said that Myers first shot at the officer. Police Chief Sam Dotson reportedly said that the black teen had fired three shots before his gun jammed, AP reported. A Missouri State Highway Patrol report revealed that Myers had gunshot residue on his hands and clothing.
“The presence of gunshot residue on a person’s hands could mean the individual discharged a firearm, was near a firearm when it was discharged or touched an object with gunshot residue on it. Individuals shot at close range can have gunshot residue deposited onto their hands,” the statement read.