Justice for Fanta Bility

Three police officers have been charged with the fatal shooting of 8-year-old Fanta Bility, who was killed last August

Parker Harms, Business Manager

Three Pennsylvania police officers have been charged with manslaughter after the fatal shooting of 8-year-old Fanta Bility outside of a high school football game in August. During the football game, the officers fired a round of bullets after two teenagers began shooting, authorities said.

Officers Devon Smith, Sean Dolan and Brian Devaney of the Police Department in Sharon Hill were charged with a total of 12 counts in court on Jan. 18, which include voluntary and involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment, said in the statement made by Jack Stollsteimer, the district attorney in Deleware County.

After announcing the charges made against the officers, the prosecutor’s office released a statement from Bruce L. Castor Jr. “They made the right call,” he said, along with adding the completion of the convictions will be “tough” but “winnable.”

The changes on Tuesday came after months of investigation and wrestling over whether any criminal charges should be filed against the officers. The charges come from a shooting that occurred on Aug. 21, 2021. The police were watching over the crowd when gunfire was heard from outside the football field at Academy Park High School in Sharon Hill while the students and family were playing and watching the season opener against Pennsbury High School.

The game remained with a few minutes on the clock and 42-0, so the game was practically over. People were already heading out when bursts of gunshots rang out.

Two of the shots were fired “in the direction of” the officers, and the officers responded with gunfire “in the direction of” the stadium, prosecutors said.

There was a total of 25 shots fired by the officers.

After the gun firing stopped, Fanta was dead, and at least three people were injured. On Sept. 2, prosecutors said there was a high possibility that Fanta and the other victims had been struck by bullets from the officers, not the teenagers.

The teenagers were charged. Hasein Strand, 18, pleaded guilty to illegal possession of a firearm and aggressive assault. The other, Angelo Ford, or AJ, “remains charged with serious crimes for his attempt to kill” Mr. Strand, the authorities said.