Father of man killed in Charlottesville standoff speaks out against police response
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A man’s death after a long standoff in Charlottesville is making headlines again.
Cecil Sites says that his son, Billy Sites, should still be alive, despite police saying otherwise.
“To me, that was murder. They just murdered him because they felt like it,” Sites said.
Sites’ son, Billy, was shot and killed by police officers on Tuesday, February 28, in Charlottesville.
Sites says that moving forward is difficult so soon after the incident and while still mourning. He says it is all made worse by what he saw.
“I was at the scene when it happened,” Sites said. “I saw him standing there. Yes, he did have a gun, but he wasn’t pointing it at nobody, he was pointing it down near the ground and a couple times up in the air but he never pointed the gun toward anybody.”
This is the opposite of what Charlottesville Police Chief Michael Kochis said after the incident.
“At some point during that encounter, the suspect turned to the tactical response team and pointed his firearm at them. At that point they fired at the suspect, striking him several times,” Chief Kochis said on Tuesday, February 28.
Sites says that the Albemarle Police SWAT team, who fired the fatal shots, should have done things differently.
“The SWAT team, why couldn’t they just shoot the damn.. shoot his arm, that would’ve made him drop everything. They didn’t have to kill him,” Sites said.
Sites says that his son did have a criminal record, but that that does not justify what happened, and that others in his son’s circle bear some of the blame.
“I even watched him take the pistol and put it up against his own head, begging them to let me come to him, and they wouldn’t let me near him at all. I know if I could’ve walked up there to him, he might be in jail, but at least he’d be alive,” Sites said.
Sites says that his son’s mental health was suffering because of the stress he was under while dealing with a former fiancée. He says his son was never a danger to the public.
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