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In the Aftermath of a Police Killing, the Justifications Begin Immediately


On the last day of his life, Harith Augustus left the barbershop where he worked on the South Side of Chicago and set out to run some errands. It was late afternoon on July 14, 2018. Walking streets he had traversed countless times before, Augustus can be seen on surveillance video moving along the sidewalk with loose-limbed grace. He’s wearing earbuds and appears to be moving to music only he can hear. Carried east by the flow of life on 71st Street, the main commercial artery in the South Shore neighborhood, he displays no unease as he passes three police officers chatting with each other at the corner of 71st and Chappel. A few minutes later, he returns, going west, and passes them again with the same air of nonchalance.

Moments later, his body lay motionless in the middle of 71st Street, having been shot five times by Officer Dillan Halley.

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