Separating fact from fiction in shooting death of Darrius Stewart

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The family of 19-year-old Darrius Stewart is still asking questions after he was shot by a Memphis police officer.

During a Wednesday TBI news conference, the director of the state agency wouldn’t comment about the warrants for Stewart but said his agents were in the St. Louis area checking them out.

Meanwhile, some friends and family of Stewart’s claim the warrants were bogus.

His friends and family say they want to remember him as being playful and smiling.

However, his background check showed at the time of his arrest he was wanted in two states, Iowa and Illinois, for charges he picked up when he was just 13.

His father said he didn’t know those warrants existed.

“I didn’t know he had none. I was reading up on it, and they said it’s another Darrius Stewart that got those warrants in Iowa. It wasn’t my son,” said Henry Williams.

Iowa City police say the warrant came from of a complaint that showed Stewart was wanted for two counts of second-degree sexual abuse against a child under 12.

The person listed as Stewart’s mother matched the one in Memphis, along with his date of birth.

The state of Illinois also had an active juvenile delinquency warrant from 2009 for a person matching Stewart’s profile with the same birth date.

Stewart’s father said even if this is true his son should not have been shot.

The officer told investigators Stewart attacked him and used handcuffs as a weapon.

“If you have to call for back up, call for back up. And y’all could have just wrestled him down and took him away. They didn’t have to kill him,” said Williams.

He said his son’s background wasn’t the only one the public should question.

With three years on the police force, Officer Connor Schilling had two serious allegations.

Internal affairs investigated him for excessive force after he stopped a woman during a traffic stop in 2013.

The allegation was not sustained, but the DUI Internal Affairs complaint he picked up while driving in Southaven the next year was.

The officer was suspended for 18 days.

“His record is worst than my sons the way I see it. He shouldn’t have even been back on the force if he had a record like that,” said Williams.

The DUI charge against Schilling was dismissed in Southaven because the arresting officer didn’t show up for court twice.

WREG will be working to find out in the coming days if the Southaven officer’s absence was intentional or not.

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