Jacai Colson, a Prince George’s County (Mary.) cop, was killed over the weekend by friendly fire during a shootout outside PGC police headquarters. Today in a press conference, police chief Hank Stawinski said that Colson was shot not accidentally, but instead “deliberately,” by a fellow officer who mistook him for one of the three suspects who participated in the offensive.
According to Stawinski, Colson, who was an undercover narcotics detective, was not in uniform and had gotten out of an unmarked vehicle at the station prior to being shot. It’s also worth noting that like the three suspects—Michael, Elijah, and Malik Ford—Colson was black. But Colson, pictured above, looked nothing like the suspects, who are pictured here.
Michael Ford, 22, was the leader of the attack on the police station. While no officers aside from Colson were wounded, Ford was shot and hospitalized. While Michael Ford fired at officers, his brothers filmed the assault on their phones. In an earlier press conference, per the Washington Post, Stawinski said the brothers will face dozens of charges, including second-degree murder and first-degree attempted murder.
The Prince George’s County PD has a long history of recklessly using its weapons. In a study of police shootings across the 1990s, the Washington Post found that the PCG PD had the highest rate of fatal shootings per officer of any major city or police force in America. In 2001, the same year the Post investigation was published, Ta-Nehisi Coates published a long examination of the PCG PD’s history of violence against its black citizens in Washington Monthly.