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Unarmed Black Motorist Shot Dead by an Oklahoma Police Officer Was a Student

Terence Crutcher, the unarmed black man who was shot to death by a white police officer in mysterious circumstances on Friday night after his car broke down in Tulsa, Okla., was on his way home from a class at Tulsa Community College, the Tulsa World reported. The college’s president said on Monday its employees were cooperating in an investigation of the incident.

The president, Leigh B. Goodson, also said that the college was offering free counseling to students and staff members and would hold two events this week to allow participants “to share dialogue and attempt to heal”: an International Day of Peace, on Wednesday, and a remembrance ceremony for Mr. Crutcher, on a date to be set later.

According to police video of the incident that was released on Monday, Mr. Crutcher, who was 40, had his hands in the air before he was shot, first by a stun gun and then by a firearm. Police audio of the episode caught the pilot of a circling police helicopter saying, “That looks like a bad dude, too. Probably on something,” according to the Associated Press. It is unclear from the limited evidence available so far what orders were issued to or by the police officers, whether Mr. Crutcher was complying with any such orders, or what led the police to regard him as a threat.

Mr. Crutcher’s sister, Tiffany, called on Monday for criminal charges to be filed against the police officer who shot her brother. “The big bad dude was my twin brother. That big bad dude was a father,” the AP quoted her as saying. “That big bad dude was a son. That big bad dude was enrolled at Tulsa Community College, just wanting to make us proud. That big bad dude loved God. That big bad dude was at church singing with all of his flaws, every week.”

Correction (9/21/2016, 1:45 p.m.): This post originally misstated the source of the “bad dude” quotation. It was spoken by the pilot of a police helicopter that was circling above the scene. It was not spoken by one of the officers involved in the confrontation with Mr. Crutcher. The post has been updated to reflect this correction.

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