Edward Crawford, the Ferguson protester who was photographed picking up throwing a tear gas bomb back, has died.
Crawford became a part of history back in 2014 by being the centerpiece of this photo.
NBC News reports:
The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department told NBC News that Crawford shot himself in the backseat of a car while it was moving, according to two witnesses who were seated in the front of the car.
“The victim began expressing he was distraught over personal matters to the witnesses,” said the police department’s Public Information Officer Leah Freeman. “The witnesses heard the victim rummaging in the backseat, then heard a gunshot and observed the victim had sustained a gunshot wound to the head.”
Crawford was pronounced dead on the scene. Police said an investigation is ongoing and, while initially declared a suicide, the official cause of death will be determined by an autopsy.
Crawford’s father, Edward Crawford, Sr. doesn’t believe that his son would take his own life. He tells reporters that the junior Crawford just moved into a new apartment, and was training for a warehouse job. Crawford is survived by his four children.
Crawford’s image became a poster of sorts for the Ferguson protests. While many thought that he was throwing the tear gas back at the police, he insists that he was throwing it to get it away from children.
“I can’t even throw a baseball that far, let alone a burning can of tear gas,” he told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “I didn’t throw a burning can back at police. I threw it out of the way of children.”