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Sharon Hill Borough Council Releases Heavily Redacted Report On Fatal Police Shooting Of 8-Year-Old Fanta Bility

SHARON HILL, Pa. (CBS) -- Sharon Hill Borough Council on Friday released its independent report into the fatal police shooting of 8-year-old Fanta Bility. This report took about nine months. The Bility family is left with more questions than answers.

The family of 8-year-old Fanta Bility is demanding answers and transparency. They say they are disappointed after the Sharon Hill Borough Council released a 50-page report with no answers.

Last August, Fanta was shot to death and three others were injured outside an Academy Park High School football game.

Police say three officers discharged 25 rounds in response to what they thought was gunfire coming from a car.

Borough Council hired former Philadelphia District Attorney Kelly Hodge to lead an independent investigation into the police department's policies and procedures on the use of force. After nine months, the council released a highly redacted report.

"To say that we are confused and disgusted would be an understatement," Ashley Dolceamore, Delco Resists, said. "That Sharon Hill Borough had the audacity to release that report when every important fact is redacted."

When Eyewitness News asked about why the report was heavily redacted, the borough solicitor said there is pending litigation and attorney-client privilege prevents the disclosure.

Calls to the mayor and police chief asking about why the recommendations moving forward were redacted were not returned.

Attorney Bruce Castor, who is representing Fanta's family, released a statement as well saying the report "is an insult to the memory of Fanta and completely unacceptable in any society that values the truth and the rule of law."

Castor's full statement reads:

The undated and redacted report made public today by Sharon Hill Borough is an insult to the memory of Fanta and completely unacceptable in any society that values the truth and the Rule of Law. The heavily edited report raises more questions in the minds of the family and the public than it answers.

Fanta's legal counsel and family members will have more to say on the report after taking several days to study it. That Sharon Hill Borough officials chose to hide from the public those portions detrimental to itself and the conduct of its officials in the training and supervision of its police department, speaks loudly to Sharon Hill's knowledge of its own guilt in connection with
Fanta's death. The government of Sharon Hill exists to protect and serve the public, but its officials think it exists to protect serve them. The redactions after having had the report for weeks (or months) is a shameful and outrageous demonstration that Sharon Hill Borough's officials are not interested in providing the truth to the public as a beginning point to heal the community. Sharon Hill's only interest is in delay. What is contained behind those black bars in the report? What else could there be apart from a professional assessment of the ineptitude of the training, policies, procedures and supervision given to the Sharon Hill Police Department in the use of deadly force?

The world will eventually learn how Sharon Hill Borough officials failed to make certain its police trained under realistic scenarios and understood fully when deadly force is permitted under the law and when it is not. That, and so much more, is what Sharon Hill Borough officials are hiding now from Fanta's family and from the community at large. It is time for the community to have its voice heard. It is time to demand the truth about the police killing Fanta.

Sharon Hill Police Officers Charged In Fatal Shooting Of 8-Year-Old Fanta Bility

The officers, Brian Devaney, Sean Dolan and Devon Smith, were charged with manslaughter and later fired. Their attorneys filed a motion this week to have the manslaughter charges dismissed.

The next hearing is scheduled for Sept. 16.

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