Seneca Leaders Break Silence On Police Shooting That Killed Teen

Zachary Hammond’s parents are still pushing Seneca and state leaders to find out what happened to their son.

Zach’s mom went to the Seneca city council urging members to break their silence on the case. So Seneca Mayor Alexander responded reading this prepared statement:

“Speaking on behalf of City Council, we empathize with you and continue to offer our condolences. No family. No city employee. No person anywhere wants to experience such a tragic event. It affects everyone in our city and our community.  The last six weeks have been long and arduous for everyone involved. From the city’s standpoint, we have done nothing to slow down this investigation. We have promptly and fully cooperated with all law enforcement officials and have released all information that we are allowed to under the law.”

Numerous times Hammond’s parents and their attorney have asked law enforcement to release the dashcam footage from the shooting. But 6 weeks later SLED tells us they’re still not sure when it will be released.

Senator Larry Martin of Pickens County says SLED needs to make their move. “I know it’s a tough time for that mom and dad,” he said. “My hope is that it comes to a conclusion pretty soon, that the investigation will produce the release of that video sooner rather than later.”

Martin says he’s working on a draft now for legislation that would get video footage released faster. He says he backs state agents on keeping video when it would damage the investigation. But he believes in officer involved shootings like Zachary’s a third party should decide when the public sees it.

“Have a judge take a look at it and say well yeah more time is justified and I’ll give you another 10 days of whatever is appropriate,” Martin explained.

The 19-year-old was unarmed and was shot and killed outside a fast food restaurant in Seneca on July 26th during an undercover drug sting.

Police say they shot in self-defense because Hammond drove his car at them. But an autopsy showed he was shot in the back, through the driver’s window.

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