A University of South Alabama student was killed after campus police used deadly force that could have been avoided, a lawyer for the student's family said after viewing surveillance video of the incident.
Authorities in Mobile have been investigating why the officer shot and killed an 18-year-old freshman who they say was naked and acting erratically outside the campus police station early Saturday.
The man, later identified as Gilbert Thomas Collar of Wetumpka, Alabama, repeatedly rushed and verbally challenged the officer in a fighting stance, the school said.
The family attorney, Jere Beasley, says, "without reservation, there is nothing on the surveillance tape that justifies the use of deadly force."
"The officer comes out of the building with his gun out of his holster," he added. "It took place over 20 or 30 seconds."
Beasley said the student was unarmed and was shot and killed by an officer who should have had access to pepper spray and a baton.
"Something happened that caused him to act in an unusual, distressed manner," Beasley said. "The fact he came to the police station indicates he was not necessarily looking for trouble. In fact, I think he was looking for help."
Campus police immediately contacted the district attorney's office to request an external investigation, and the Mobile County Sheriff's Department will assist, the school said.
The officer has been placed on paid administrative leave pending internal and external investigations, the school said.
School spokesman Keith Ayers called it a "campus tragedy" for the university family but offered no other details, citing the investigation.