APRIL 8, 2015 — The bystander who recorded the deadly police shooting of Walter Scott spoke out for the first time in an interview with Lester Holt on tonight’s “NBC Nightly News.”
The witness, Feidin Santana, said he sought to make the video public because he felt: “If I would have a family member that happened to, I would like to know the truth.”
Holt anchored the broadcast from North Charleston, SC.
A transcript of the interview is below and video from Wednesday’s “NBC Nightly News” is online here: http://nbcnews.to/1GMEnc8
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LESTER HOLT INTERVIEWS FEIDIN SANTANA, WITNESS TO WALTER SCOTT SHOOTING
MANDATORY CREDIT: NBC NEWS
LESTER HOLT: What made you pick up your phone and start shooting on Saturday?
FEIDIN SANTANA: Well, when I saw the scene, I was walking from my job. I was walking to my job and I saw Mr Scott…and I saw police after him, tase him. I was on a phone call and I decide to go over there and see what was going on.
LESTER HOLT: Was there a struggle?
FEIDIN SANTANA: There was, they were down on the floor, they were down on the floor, before I started recording, they were down on the floor. I remember the police [officer] had control of the situation. He had control of Scott, and Scott was trying just to get away from the taser. You can hear the sound of the taser.
LESTER HOLT: He had been tased at that point?
FEIDIN SANTANA: Yeah, yeah.
LESTER HOLT: And you heard the sound?
FEIDIN SANTANA: Yes, I heard the sound before I started recording. And I believe he was just trying to get away from the taser. But like I said, he never used the taser against the cop.
LESTER HOLT: So Mr. Scott runs away.
FEIDIN SANTANA: He runs away, yes.
LESTER HOLT: And what does the police officer do?
FEIDIN SANTANA: As you can see in the video, the police officer just shot him in the back. I knew right away that I had something on my hands.
LESTER HOLT: Ultimately, you turned it over to the attorneys for the family.
FEIDIN SANTANA: Yes, I gave it to the family yeah.
LESTER HOLT: What was their reaction?
FEIDIN SANTANA: They were very emotional, when that happened, including me also. When I turned it, I felt…I thought about his position, their situation and if I would have a family member that happened to, I would like to know the truth.
LESTER HOLT: As a result of that video, a police officer has been charged with murder. How do you feel about that?
FEIDIN SANTANA: It’s not something that no one can feel happy about. He has family, Mr Scott, also has his family, but I think you know he made a bad decision and you pay for your decisions in this life. Mr. Scott didn’t deserve this. There are other ways that can be used to get him arrested and that wasn’t the proper way to do that.
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