Following the release of body camera footage showing the police shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo in the early morning hours of March 29 in Chicago, on CNN Tonight With Don Lemon Thursday, Lemon came to the defense of the officer involved. In the video, the officer is chasing Toledo down an alley, yelling for the teenager to stop, and to drop his weapon. In the video, Toledo appears to be carrying a gun, much like the one found just feet away following the shooting. As the Derek Chauvin trial nears an end for the killing of George Floyd, and protests continue over the police killing of Daunte Wright, Lemon came to the defense of the Chicago officer as he doesn’t believe this incident belongs in the same category as the others.
Speaking to Chris Cuomo during the hand-off between shows, Lemon said, “This is tough, Chris, because, you know, not all police shootings are equal.” He soon added, “If someone's running with a gun and they turn around, police officers have to make decisions in split seconds. That's why I'm not a police officer, because I couldn't face that kind of pressure, and I just, quite frankly, don't believe that I could do the job.”