‘Thank you for proving all lives matter’ Portsmouth resident thanks Sergeant after altercation

Posted at 2:47 PM, Dec 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-15 23:18:25-05

PORTSMOUTH, Va. - The family member of a man involved in an altercation with police posted a public thank you on his Facebook page.

Travis Brown says he was a part of the group that stood outside and protested against the unjust acts of police officers, but he wanted to take the time to share an experience that ended much better than it could have.

"If I could get up and I could go out and stand in the hot blazing sun, hold a sign, Black Lives Matter, I think on the opposite side, being that it did directly affected me as well, I could actively post and say thank you," he says.

Brown says Sergeant Matt Crutcher, knowing that his loved one had a gun, "handled the situation in a way that everyone was able to see another day."

News 3 was there when the two met for the first time since the incident.

"He handled it like professional," says Brown.

Sergeant Crutcher says the call came in as an armed person.

"That's the scenario, a black man, white officer, hands aren't up, giving commands, not following commands, it's a recipe for disaster," says Brown.

When Sergeant Crutcher arrived, he did have his weapon out, but when the man closed the distance between them, Sergeant Crutcher says he put it away and called his k9 partner, Eli, to help.

"I felt like I could go hands on," he says. "During the course of that struggle I was able to maintain his reach to that weapon, to where he couldn't get it."

Sergeant Crutcher says the peaceful ending happens more than people realize. This year alone, more than 250 situations of armed individuals throughout the city ended without use of deadly force.

"All lives do matter to some people," says Brown.