DECATUR, AL – A deadly incident unfolded in Decatur, Alabama, where a local man lost his life in a police-involved shooting. The incident occurred on September 29, when law enforcement officers accompanied a repossession agent to the man’s residence. The family of the deceased, Steve Perkins, 39, has described the event as an “ambush.”
Security footage from neighboring homes captured the confrontation between Perkins and the officers. The video, released by Perkins’ family, includes audio of a man pleading, “Hey, give me my truck back!” followed by another voice shouting, “Hey, hey, police! Get on the ground!” Gunfire erupted shortly after, with over a dozen rounds fired within a span of four seconds. Brenton Lipscomb, a spokesperson for the family, that the footage suggested Perkins was unaware of who was in his yard. He pointed out that the officers were in uniform, but the neighborhood was dark. No police cars were visible in front of the house. Instead, they were parked down the street, concealed in neighboring yards and around the house.
The Decatur Police Department and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) have yet to comment on the incident or verify the authenticity of the footage. However, in earlier statements, state law enforcement reported that Perkins was armed with a handgun equipped with a light and had brandished the weapon toward a Decatur Police officer, prompting the officer to fire at Perkins.
ALEA has pledged a thorough and methodical investigation into the incident. The family has stated that Perkins was behind on his truck payments, but the vehicle had not yet been officially repossessed. A repossession agent had attempted to take the truck earlier that night but was unsuccessful. The agent returned later, this time accompanied by police.
Perkins, an employee of pet food manufacturer J.M. Smucker and a father of two children aged 14 and 7, had no prior interactions with the police, except for a DUI arrest over a decade ago. A representative for the towing company involved in the attempted repossession was unavailable for comment.