ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - Police say the man officers shot and killed at Mardi Gras over the weekend pointed a gun at officers after firing in a crowd. But his nephew says 32 year old Otis Roberson was out numbered in a fight and just trying to defend himself.
Kelvin Davis says he talked Roberson into going to his first ever Mardi Gras that day. He says the fight started when a man attacked his uncle for hugging a woman and then the man's friends piled on.
He says Roberson pulled out a pistol and fired in the air to get away from his attackers -- that's when police arrived and ordered him to drop his gun.
"They were yelling something and I later learned it was 'put the gun down' obviously, but my uncle never heard anything that they said or anything," says Davis who also says the officers were behind his uncle and because of the noise from loud music and the crowd his uncle didn't hear their commands. "If he'd known they were behind him he would have put that gun down," Davis maintains.
Davis admits Roberson had been drinking but does not believe he was impaired.
St. Louis Police say the investigation into the shooting is ongoing, but over the weekend Police Chief Sam Dotson defended the actions of the officers saying the officers, "acted to save people's lives. They didn't know what the intention of that individual was. He had a gun out, already fired some shots. They did what they're trained to do."