Israel Hernández-Llach, an award-winning artist and Colombian immigrant, died on Tuesday morning after Miami Beach police shot him in the chest with a stun-gun. Hernández, a painter, sculpter, and graffiti artist known as “Reefa,” was spray-painting an unused McDonalds when he was spotted by police officers and took off running. The police eventually caught up to him and according to his friends Thiago Souza and Félix Fernández—who were on lookout that morning and witnessed the shooting—he was shoved against a wall and shot in chest with a taser gun. Fernández and Souza also report that the police officers joked about the victim while he was on the ground and gave each other high fives.
The victim’s family has called for an independent investigation, and supporters are offering condolences on Twitter using hash-tags #JusticeForIsrael and #RIPreefa. There is a vigil scheduled for August 10th at boarded-up McDonalds where the incident took place.