Attorneys for six-year-old Kodi Gaines argue that the circumstances surrounding his mother’s controversial shooting death last August differ from some prevailing narratives. The attorneys filed an amended complaint in Baltimore County Court Tuesday on behalf of Korryn Gaines’ son.

Officer Royce Ruby Jr. shot and killed the young Maryland woman, in front of Kodi, after a lengthy standoff. The complaint alleges that Ruby Jr. also hit Kodi, then five years old, twice with bullets. The officer’s first shot hit the boy in his face, with the second hitting his elbow, according to attorney Kenneth Ravenell.

The attorneys said 23-year-old Gaines did not direct her shotgun at police as Ruby Jr. fired at her from the hallway outside Gaines’ apartment. “There was this … suggestion that Korryn Gaines was pointing her weapon at police officers at the time she was shot,” Ravenell, who represents Kodi, told the Baltimore Sun. “That is just not true.”

For many young adults, Gaines’ shooting death became a rallying cry. Oftentimes, police brutality and use of force discussions center Black men’s and boys’ lost lives. While Black folks should not lose our women, girls, boys or men at such disparate rates in comparison with our white counterparts, many argued that Gaines’ death highlighted an intra-group schism.

How many times do Black women show up for Black men who do not reciprocate? Is the expectation that Black men’s issues deserve the lion’s share of focus and advocacy? What about how police violence against Black women impacts the women’s offspring? Ravenell told the Sun Kodi is “going to remember that he watched his mother be gunned down in his presence.”

The civil trial is slated to start on January 30, 2018 in Baltimore County Circuit Court. In 2016, police officers shot and killed 963 reported people while in the line of duty, according to the Washington Post.

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