Fatal police shooting victim’s mother calls for justice

Marcia Kittrell speaks out
Marcia Kittrell speaks out(16 News Now)
Published: Aug. 20, 2022 at 3:17 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - The investigation into the fatal South Bend police-involved shooting that killed 51-year-old Dante Kittrell is still ongoing, but Kittrell’s family said they won’t rest until there is some form of justice.

On Saturday, Marcia Kittrell, Dante’s mother, and her attorney, as well as other organization leaders, gathered outside of the family home, located less than a mile from where Dante was killed by police. They were asking the community to unite and demand change within local law enforcement and mental health services.

“My son would be alive today, if somebody from mental health, not the police, but somebody from mental health. Or even if I could have spoken with him. No. It’s terrible,” Kittrell said.

Marcia Kittrell spoke about the pain of losing her son but says she now feels it is her job to fight for other parents and children who suffer from mental health issues.

“It’s my job to fight not only for my son but for every son, every son that has a mental illness. I have another child that has a mental illness, and I don’t want her shot,” explained Kittrell.

Her attorney said that they will continue to seek answers and advocate for better training amongst law enforcement, especially when it comes to dealing with individuals struggling with mental health issues like Dante Kittrell did.

“If they get a mental health unit, name it in his honor. That’s what I want. So, some other mother doesn’t have to go through what I just did, a half a block from home.”

While this investigation is ongoing, an increasing number of South Bend residents are asking for the release of the body cam and dash cam footage from the day Dante Kittrell was shot.

Mayor Mueller released a statement earlier this month regarding the police-involved shooting, saying that more needs to be done to strengthen mental health services and that the city will hold a forum to discuss crisis procedures on Sept. 6. The forum was rescheduled from its original date, Aug. 23, this past week.