Death of Teen by Police Sparks State and Nationwide Outcry

Photo Credit/Jonathan Mostafa

Jonathan Mostafa

Staff Writer

The Pennsylvania State Police, along with the Monroe County District Attorney’s office, continue to investigate the shooting death of 19-year-old Christian Hall on a local overpass in late December 2020. 

It all happened when the Monroe County Control Center received a 911 call for a distraught and suicidal male with a gun on the Route 33 Southbound overpass of Interstate 80, by Bartonsville in Hamilton Township, on Dec. 30, 2020. 

Police reports allege that Hall, who was of Asian descent and had a history of mental health problems, was in possession of a firearm.  

State troopers were in a brief stand-off with Hall where they negotiated for a moment. 

According to a press release, troopers were able to get Hall to place his firearm on the ground and continue negotiations with the teen. 

At one point, it is reported that Hall became uncooperative and picked up the firearm from the ground and began to walk in the direction of the troopers. 

That’s when troopers fired, hitting Hall several times, the press release stated.

Hall was rushed to Lehigh Valley Hospital Pocono, where he would later be pronounced deceased.

The only video evidence seen by the public so far is a distorted and shaky cell phone video, captured by a motorist who was among many stuck in stand still traffic on interstate 80 due to the incident happening. 

The shooting has gained national attention and sparked outrage from those who believe the shooting was unjustified. 

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that around 40 people showed up at Philadelphia’s City Hall on Friday, Feb. 12, to protest the shooting of Hall.

The incident also garnered the attention of civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump.  He has notably represented and defended the families of Michael Brown, Treyvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd.

According to the Morning Call, Crump, along with attorney Devon M. Jacob, announced plans to file an excessive force lawsuit against the state police.

“I think we need to wait for more evidence to come out and the investigation to finish before we make assumptions on one cell phone video,” says Melanie Bennett of Saylorsburg.

Since the incident, the troopers involved have been placed back on full duty, though their names have not been released yet due to the ongoing investigation.

Email Jonathan At:

jmostafa@live.esu.edu

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