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Unarmed Teen Shot Dead by Cop — The Teen Had a Small Amount of Marijuana

Zachary Hammond: The cop provided the same old "self-defense, he tried to run me over" story.
Zachary Hammond: The killer cop provided the same old "self-defense, he tried to
run me over" story.
By Jareen Imam
You think you've heard this story before. A young, unarmed man is gunned down by police, black activists are outraged -- the only difference with this scenario is that the young man is not black, he's white.

Nineteen-year-old Zachary Hammond was on a date July 26 when he was fatally shot twice by a police officer while at the back parking lot of a Hardee's fast food restaurant in Seneca, a city 40 miles from Greenville, near the North Carolina border, according to Eric Bland, the attorney representing the teen's family.

The Seneca Police Department said the officer was conducting a drug investigation and shot Hammond in self-defense.

"He was a uniformed officer, he was in a marked vehicle, was out of his vehicle on foot approaching the suspect vehicle -- weapon drawn given it was a narcotics type violation," Seneca Police Chief John Covington said to CNN affiliate WHNS.

A small amount of marijuana was found in the front passenger's compartment in Hammond's car.

"He was a 19-year-old, 121-pound kid killed basically for a joint," Bland said.


Bland said Hammond's wounds indicate the vehicle was not moving, and the teen was shot on the rear of his shoulder and on the side of his chest. The Hammond family commissioned an independent autopsy, which found the teen's gunshot wounds indicated he was shot from behind and at close range. 

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