Armed Black Woman Holding 5-Year-Old Son Shot Dead By Police Over Traffic Violations



A 23-year-old Maryland woman holding her five-year-old son was shot dead by police Monday after an hours-long standoff  which began when cops attempted to serve her with an arrest warrant for traffic violations. Her child was shot once in the leg but is expected to survive.

Police arrived at Korryn Gaines’ Randallstown apartment to arrest her for missing a court date, disorderly conduct, and “numerous other traffic offenses,” according to Baltimore County Police Chief James Johnson. Police were also executing a warrant for an unidentified man at the same address wanted for assault.

Police say that they knocked on Gaines’ door, but no one answered despite being able to hear the sound of voices inside. They claim when they obtained a key from the landlord, an officer entered the apartment to find the mother sitting with her son in one hand and a shotgun in the other.

Via the Independent:

“The officers retreated to the hallway outside the apartment and called for additional support,” [a police] spokesperson said.

“The male suspect ran from the apartment with a one-year-old boy – one of two children in in the apartment with the couple – and was apprehended by police.

“The armed woman remained inside with the five-year-old boy, and a barricade situation began at about 9.40am and continued throughout the afternoon.”

More officers arrived at the scene, and the building’s tenants were evacuated. According to Chief Johnson, authorities tried to talk Gaines into surrendering for several hours, until 3 p.m., when an officer opened fire on the woman — she was still holding her son — after she allegedly pointed her gun at the officer and said, “If you don’t leave, I am going to kill you.”


Gaines reportedly returned fire, shooting the weapon twice, missing officers. She was shot “multiple times” by police and died at the scene. Her son also was hit once in the leg and taken to the hospital.

A police spokesperson could not confirm whether police at the scene were wearing body cameras at the time of the shooting.

“Our body camera program is just a few weeks old,” said Elise Armacost, the department’s director of public affairs. “We are looking to see whether any officers involved in this case were wearing cameras but only a few officers are wearing them at this point.”

In the aftermath of the shooting, videos Gaines purportedly recorded during the standoff and posted to her social media accounts began circulating on Twitter. Accounts that Gaines’ Facebook page had been deleted following her death could not be confirmed, but Instagram videos taken during the fatal encounter were still live as of Tuesday morning.

Prior to Monday, Gaines had posted a number of videos to her Instagram account of encounters with police, including the traffic stop in March that resulted in her arrest warrant. In one video, she informs her son, who is in the backseat, to record everything that happens should she be arrested.

Other posts show Gaines was a strong advocate of the Second Amendment, especially for the black community.

“We are of course extremely upset at an event like this,” Armacost said of Gaines’ death. “We do not like to be in a position of having to use lethal force, but this was a situation where our officers exercised patience for hours and hours.”

Protesters on social media, however, questioned whether Gaines would have been apprehended alive if her skin had been a different color.

A vigil is planned for Friday, 7 p.m. at Baltimore City College.

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