David Leonard
David Leonard

The shooting death of Zachary Hammond by police in Seneca, S.C., has not received as much attention as some recent officer-involved shooting deaths of African-Americans. His family’s attorney contends that the reason most people have never heard of Mr. Hammond is because he was white.

Aside from race, another notable difference is that investigators have refused to release a police dashboard camera video that may show Mr. Hammond’s death, while graphic videos of African-American killings quickly went viral, galvanizing outrage. And in some other cases, prosecutors swiftly brought charges against officers.

David J. Leonard, an associate professor and chairman of the department of critical culture, gender and race studies at WSU, said that despite highly publicized cases like the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and Freddie Gray in Baltimore, many questionable deaths of minorities still received little attention.

“There are countless other cases involving African-Americans in the past year that have not received coverage anywhere near the level of Zachary Hammond,” Professor Leonard said. Yet he said much of the attention the Hammond case received on Twitter was spurred by Black Lives Matter activists.

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The New York Times