In a Vallejo strip mall earlier during the month, two strangers squared off in a heated argument leading to one shooting after the other.

The shooter was an off-duty police officer while the victim was a 38-year-old construction worker named Eric Reason. He was declared dead at the scene.

The incident has left a lot of questions unanswered. A photograph taken by a witness showed something peculiar. As the victim’s body lay on the ground, the officer appeared to hover over him and take a picture as another Vallejo Police Department officer stood by.

Local media outlets could not immediately verify the authenticity of the photo, and the witness did not want to be identified.

Melissa Nold, the attorney representing Reason’s mother, Stephanie Bass, shared the image online, claiming they were apprehensive about the integrity of the police investigation considering the apparent corruption of the scene by members of the department.

Bass stated her son did not deserve what happened to him in that parking lot. She added that she just wanted justice and to find out what happened that he would be shot down like that.

The East Bay Times has identified the off duty officer as Sgt. Virgil Thomas.

As the dispute ensued, nearby apartment manager Kim Lynch said she had gunshots and ran to help.

She described a tall African American gentleman standing which a gun while another African American male was on the ground. The officer was reportedly from the Richmond police department.

According to the court documents, it was found that Thomas was the object of a federal rights complaint in 2007, which concerned the use of excessive force. There was another incident in 2005 as well, where he deprived a man of medical care.

Reason was the father of six children and a local rap artist, who went by "Cheddaman."

Patricia Perez’s grandson, Pedie, was also killed by Richmond police in 2014 in a separate incident and said she believes the department hires people who are too quick on the trigger.

Considering information is scanty on the incident, the community is left to speculate, and the people at the scene claim this is only going to deepen the divide between the police and the black community even if the shooter was black.

There is a new police chief who is being sworn in today for the Vallejo police department. The fact that Sunday’s shootings happened at the hands of a Richmond police officer is not likely to make things any easier for the new chief.

pistol-3000451_640 Pistol Photo: Pixabay