Jacob Blake, the man who was shot seven times by a white police officer last year in Kenosha, says he only resisted arrest because he didn’t want to get “beat on” and did not want to become “the next George Floyd.”
Blake, speaking to “Good Morning America” in an interview recorded Tuesday, said that after he was shot, he thought that he was going to die.
“I was counting down my breaths and my blinks,” Blake said, sitting in a wheelchair during the interview, which aired Thursday. “I’m just like, ‘God, I’m coming. I guess this is it for me.’”
The interview comes just days after Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley announced there would be no charges against the officer who shot Blake on Aug. 23.
Graveley said he didn’t believe he could convince a jury that Kenosha Police Officer Rusten Sheskey, who shot Blake, didn’t act in self-defense. Key to that decision was “incontrovertible” evidence that Blake was “armed with a knife.” And Graveley said Blake had admitted having the knife. Blake’s shooting triggered days of civil unrest in Kenosha.
In the interview with GMA, Blake disputed that he was threatening anyone with a knife. Blake said that he’d had the knife in his pocket and that it had fallen out during the scuffle with police.
“I realized I had dropped my knife, a little pocket knife,” Blake said. “So I picked it up ....”
The day he was shot, Blake was at the apartment of the mother of three of his children to celebrate the birthday of their 8-year-old son, Blake told GMA. At some point, an argument broke out between the mother and a neighbor, Blake said, adding he decided to drive two of his children to the store “to forget about all this.”
But on 911 tape, the mother can be heard asking for police to come to her apartment because Blake is trying to take her car. At the time of the shooting, investigators have said, there was a warrant out for Blake’s arrest.
In the GMA interview, Blake denied he knew why police approached him. He said police never told him they had an arrest warrant, something officers dispute. Before he was shot, police used a Taser multiple times. Blake told GMA he had his “hands up” at the time.
Asked why he didn’t simply obey the police commands, Blake said: “I couldn’t hear that. All I heard was screaming, screaming. My ears was ringing. So it was all muffled.”
After he was shot, with two of his children in the backseat of his car, Blake told GMA he said: “Daddy loves you, no matter what.’ I thought it was going to be the last thing I say to them. Thank God it wasn’t.”
.@GMA EXCLUSIVE: “If you're a Black person in America and you are not perfect, then they say, oh, it was justified. It's like our children have to be angel.”— Good Morning America (@GMA) January 14, 2021
Jacob Blake’s attorney Ben Crump tells @michaelstrahan. https://t.co/Bhu9g7PUfB pic.twitter.com/3x6tFTisOZ