Moss Point police officers shot a woman who had been holding a gun to her head before she suddenly turned it toward them, the department said in a press release Wednesday.
The woman underwent surgery at Singing River Hospital and is expected to recover from her injuries, police said.
Moss Point police said officers had been dispatched at about 5 p.m. Tuesday to a local convenience store “for a report of a woman walking around holding a gun to her head.”
The officers found her standing near a gas pump outside her car and tried to talk to her.
“She removed a gun from her purse, placed a gun to her head and drove away while continuing to hold it to her head,” the release said.
The officers followed her to Eastwood Drive. She sat in the car with the gun to her head and then went into a house. She came out of the house and walked down the road.
“She continued to hold the gun to her head as officers and residents continued to beg her to put the gun down,” the release said. “The woman suddenly moved the gun away from her head and pointed it directly at officers, forcing them to fire on her.”
Captured on Facebook Live
The shooting was recorded and shared on Facebook Live. The video was taken from a distance and in low light, and does not capture the beginning of the woman’s interactions with police.
It shows a residential neighborhood where police appear to be in a standoff with a woman standing in the road near a house.
As the video begins, the woman who recorded the video pleaded for the woman interacting with police to stay in the light apparently cast by police flashlights, instead of walking into the shadows.
About 46 seconds into the video, the woman raises her arms and appears to point something in the direction of the officers. It’s not clear what she is holding.
At least three shots ring out, and the woman falls to the ground.
The Live video captured witnesses’ screams.
“She got mental problems,” the recorder screams. “Oh, my God.”
The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation is investigating the shooting, as it does for every officer-involved shooting and fatality in the state.
The Moss Point and Jackson County chapter of the NAACP has received a copy of the Facebook video of the shooting.
“We feel like it’s worth monitoring the situation to ensure that there was no impropriety,” NAACP chapter President Curley Clark said Wednesday. “We have not been able to form a conclusion as to who initiated shots and if there was any way to avoid the outcome.”
The NAACP has not yet decided whether to proceed with a formal investigation of its own.
“You know, there are two sides to every story so I want to get more information,” Clark said, “and I want to make sure that the truth be told.”