Shalala Fletcher: Mother of 3 shot in back by off-duty security guard
Shalala Sharelle Fletcher was a mother of three who was gunned down outside a Port Arthur, Texas convenience store on a Saturday morning.
More than a month after the July 2, 2016 shooting, new information is starting to trickle out about the fatal shooting of the 36-year-old in the small Texas city.
Autopsy results released in August 2016 show that Fletcher had drugs in her system, including cocaine and THC, the active substance in marijuana, according to KFDM. The autopsy also contained this bombshell: Cause of death: Homicide.
It also says that Fletcher was shot in the back, a finding that has outraged the community, including religious leaders, who met this week in front of the county court house to hold a news conference on the case. The autopsy reportedly says that a single bullet passed through Fletcher's aorta, ribs and lungs.
Fletcher's fatal ordeal began when she was a passenger in a vehicle that came under scrutiny after two men ran out of the convenience store after purportedly stealing some beer. An off-duty security guard who happened to stop at the store for an unrelated reason, saw the two men and opened fire on the car, killing Fletcher.
The case has drawn the interest of civil rights advocates and activists after no charges were filed against the security guard.
"We're very remorseful and my client has been extremely pained that there was a loss of life in this but I think that it will be very clear that my client's actions were lawful and justified," Scott Renick, an attorney representing the guard, told KFMD. "There has been a lot of inaccurate information that's been disseminated into the public about what actually occurred but this is something where my client had to make some decisions very quickly feeling that his own person or life was in jeopardy and took actions that were justified and lawful."
Renick told the TV station that it is irrelevant that Fletcher was found to have illicit drugs in her system.
"The autopsy results do not change anything. What I think it does suggest is that the people that ultimately were involved in this alleged robbery appeared to have maybe been making some decisions that were questionable leading up to this," he said.
Clergy from the Port Arthur area have rallied around Fletcher's family. The preachers say the fact that two alleged criminals were on the scene with Fletcher bears little on the cold-blooded killing.
At no point do we support or condone criminal activity,” says Pastor Randy Vaughn of Mt. Sinai Baptist told KBMT. For there to be justice, it must apply to all and not some, otherwise there is no justice."
A grand jury is expected to hear the case in a matter of weeks.