Clark’s death enraged much of Sacramento. The Rev. Al Sharpton spoke at his funeral, and Clark’s distraught brother interrupted a city council meeting. The fatal shooting, which was recorded on police body camera, came amid increased scrutiny of the killing of unarmed black men by U.S. police in recent years.
Attorneys for the family publicly named both officers a few weeks later. Police have not confirmed their identities, citing threats to their safety, so this newspaper will not name them. Both officers remain on the job, according to CBS13 Sacramento, though they no longer patrol.
“I think they need to be approached in spaces where they’re a little bit more vulnerable,” Tanya Faison, the founder of the city’s Black Lives Matter chapter, told the station.
She explained how protesters learned of the officer’s wedding plans on his personal website and drove an hour to a vineyard outside Sacramento over the weekend to spoil it.
“We’re not violent, we’re not going to give to them what they brought to our community, we’re not going to hurt anyone,” she said. “But we are going to make them uncomfortable.”
The video shows a man, presumably the betrothed officer, seated at the head of a table, eating what looks like a sandwich. Five other men sit near him, all in their undershirts. A few bottles of light beer and wrapping paper are scattered around the table.
A door opens behind the groom, who wheels around from a paper plate to look at the impromptu camera crew walking in.
A woman behind the lens addresses him by name and asks, her voice neutral: “I just wondered if you started planning your wedding before you killed Stephon Clark, or after.”
The man at the head of the table rubs his face and turns back to his plate. On either side of him, his friends glare at the intruders.
“I wondered how you’ve been sleeping since March 18,” the woman says as the camera pans to a dress shirt hung neatly on the wall. “I know this is supposed to be the happiest day of your life. He will not have that —”
“Can you get her out of here?” the groom finally interrupts. A man beside him gets up, and a moment later his frame fills the camera’s.
“Get out. This is private,” he says, but the woman keeps talking a moment longer.
“So we just came here for this … ” she says, her voice obscured by his. “And also to ask you how you’ve been sleeping.”
“Murderer!” someone else says from behind the camera. “You’re a murderer!”
Police did not directly confirm the video’s authenticity to The Washington Post, but released a statement that reads: “The Sacramento Police Department is aware of this incident. We take these matters seriously. The safety of our officers is a priority, as well as that of their families. We will continue to take measures to ensure their safety.”
“We are committed to transparency, integrity, and working with our community to move forward,” the statement continues. “Incidents such as these are not in line with our goal of building trust and positive partnerships with our entire community.”
And Sgt. Vance Chandler added in a comment to CBS13:
“I feel that our department has handled demonstrations and protests very well and we have taken great efforts to allow people to exercise their First Amendment rights. But on this one, what is the purpose of this?”
As if to answer the police spokesman, Faison of Black Lives Matter told CBS13: “He’s going to remember this day for the rest of his life.”
This story has been updated with a response from police.