A&E’s The First 48 filmed raid that killed 7-year-old girl

The police raid that resulted in the death of 7-year-old Aiyana Jones in Detroit last weekend was filmed by a crew for A&E’s reality series The First 48.

The show “was filming during the incident” and “is cooperating with police in the probe, and investigators have examined the footage taken by the crew at the scene early Sunday morning,” The Detroit News reports. (Here’s the paper’s report on the raid and the girl’s death.)

The family’s attorney said that “video shows an officer lobbing the grenade and then shooting into the home from the porch,” which differs from officers’ accounts, but the attorney also “declined to say whether it was shot by the crew for the A&E series ‘The First 48,’ which has been shadowing Detroit homicide detectives for months,” according to the AP.

“There is no question about what happened because it’s in the videotape. It’s not an accident. It’s not a mistake. There was no altercation. Aiyana Jones was shot from outside on the porch. The videotape shows clearly the officer throwing through the window a stun grenade-type explosive and then within milliseconds of throwing that, firing a shot from outside the home,” attorney Geoffrey Fieger said.

Assistant Chief Ralph “Godbee said the department was confident the film crew’s presence had no effect on how the raid was conducted” but has requested the film crew’s footage. A&E publicist Dan Silberman told the AP that the network had no comment, nor would they give footage to the AP.

Attorney Karri Mitchell, who’s also representing the family, told the Detroit News that police “were excited; they were on TV. They didn’t have to throw a grenade through the front window when they knew there were children in there.”

Fieger blasts Detroit police accounts of girl’s death and ‘First 48′ role debated in girl’s death [The Detroit News]
Attorney: Video shows police fired into home [AP]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.