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Family releases statement after man dies in Decatur officer-involved shooting

DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) — The family of a man killed in a police-involved shooting in Decatur Friday morning released a statement calling for transparency in the investigation.

The statement, released by a representative for Stephen Clay Perkins’ family, called the loss “traumatic” and encouraged the city of Decatur to be transparent when communicating with the family about the incident.

“The most respectful way for the City of Decatur, Alabama, and the Decatur, Alabama Police Department to respond to this tragedy is to be proactive and ultimately transparent in communicating with the family and the City of Decatur community,” the release said.

The statement also said the family was not provided with any footage of the incident and requested that body camera footage be released.

“The city maintains body cameras that should have been used during the incident,” the release said. “The family is asking the city to hand over the images. Meanwhile, the incident is being monitored by home security cameras. The unfairly excessive force is visible in home surveillance footage.

The family said Perkins was not known for his aggressive behavior and described him as a “family-oriented young black man striving for excellence.” The release also said the family found no evidence that Perkin’s car had been repossessed at the time of the incident.

“Although many rumors circulate, the family found financial receipts proving that Clay’s monthly payments were processed through his finance company and no evidence that Clay’s vehicle was in repossessed condition, which indicates that the towing company and the City of Decatur Police Department showed up at Clay’s home by mistake,” the release states.

The family ended their statement by demanding a full investigation into the encounter.

“In this memorandum, the family demands a thorough investigation into the encounter that took place at Clay’s home on the morning of September 29, 2023,” the statement said. “We call for the actions of justice to be carried out. We demand the removal of the officers who entered Clay’s home the morning of the event, the removal of the officers who used excessive force, and responses from the city’s justice system. We do not request administrative leave for affected officers, also known as “free vacation.”

You can read the full statement here.


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