Salt Lake City Police Chief Burbank talks Dillon shooting death, Ferguson riots

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah)- Tuesday, we learned more information about the officer-involved shooting in South Salt Lake that killed 20-year-old Dillon Taylor.

Salt Lake City’s Police Chief says that shooting just doesn't compare to the rising tensions in Ferguson, Missouri where 18-year-old Michael Brown was killed by police.

Chief Burbank spoke with the media for about an hour in what wasn't a presser but a question and answer session. He says dialogue is what's missing between police departments and communities across the nation.

These scenes from Ferguson, Missouri would be the opposite of what Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank would call good community policing.

“If we show up wearing riot gear it says throw rocks and boulders at us,” said Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank.

Chief Burbank says Salt Lake City is not Ferguson. And he's handling the officer-involved shooting that lead to 20-year-old Dillon Taylor’s death much differently than Ferguson Police.

“I didn't send officers out wearing riot gear to talk to the protesters who were out in front of the building yesterday,” said Chief Burbank.

At a candlelight vigil and moment of silence last week, these demonstrators said all they want are answers. But right now... Chief Burbank isn't giving many. He has yet to release the body camera video from the officer who shot Dillon Taylor.

“Perception is part of what plays into this. I want to know what the officer says, I want to know what the other officer says, I want to know what every witness has to say, that's not captured on video,” said Chief Burbank.

That’s why Burbank won't say if he believed his officer was justified in shooting and killing Taylor. He says some of the attention should be diverted to the victim. What was Taylor doing that lead to the shooting?

”If an officer gives you direction, even if you don't think its right, you should comply,” said Chief Burbank.

But he did offer these words to Taylor’s family and friends:

“I am very sorry that happened. That is not the intent of the police department. I know, having spoken first hand with the officer involved it was not his intent to take that young man's life,” said Chief Burbank.

Chief Burbank says he will not release any more information about the Dillon Taylor shooting because he says it would be inappropriate because there are several investigations ongoing.


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