Alia E. Dastagir
Published 2:28 PM EDT Jun 22, 2019
2020 Democratic hopeful Pete Buttigieg is facing a crisis at home.
The South Bend, Indiana, mayor cancelled several campaign events this week following a police-involved shooting that left a black man dead, and on Friday he returned to the city to address emotional protesters, with video of the confrontation going viral.
The visibly angry crowd shouted at Buttigieg and questioned whether he believed “black lives matter.” One protester asked if Buttigieg was “a racist.”
ANALYSIS: Buttigieg’s campaign faces test after fatal South Bend police shooting of a black man
When Buttigieg told the crowd he did “not have evidence that there has been discipline for racist behavior” a protestor responded “You running for president and you expect black people to vote for you?”
Buttigieg told her, “I’m not asking for your vote,” to which she replied, “you ain’t gonna get it either.”
South Bend resident Eric Logan was shot early Sunday after police responded to a report that a suspicious person was going through cars, the St. Joseph County prosecutor’s office said.
Logan was confronted by South Bend Police Sergeant Ryan O’Neill, who is white, while he was in a vehicle at an apartment building parking lot. The prosecutor’s office said Logan exited the vehicle and approached the officer with a knife raised and the officer opened fire.
Authorities say no police video exists of the confrontation. St. Joseph County Prosecutor Ken Cotter said O’Neill’s dash and body cameras weren’t activated because he was driving slowly without his emergency lights on while looking for a person possibly breaking into cars about 3:30 a.m. Sunday.
Logan, 54, died at a hospital.
Buttigieg has been criticized by black community leaders in South Bend in the past. During his first term in office, he fired the city’s first black police chief, according to the AP. He also was criticized for his handling of past shootings that involved police officers and the lack of diversity in the city’s police department. Forty percent of South Bend residents are black or Hispanic, but the police department is almost 90% white, the AP reported.
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Contributing: Rebecca Morin, USA TODAY; The Associated Press