During a question and answer session following a speech at a black church in Cleveland Heights, Donald Trump addresses the police shooting of unarmed black man Terence Crutcher which happened in Tulsa, Oklahoma on Monday.
Trump empathized with both the shooting victim ("he looked like a really good man... it looked like he did everything right") and the officer who allegedly shot him ("I don't know what she was thinking... Was she scared? Was she choking?") and also demonstrated that he understands how the media can affect your perception of incidents like this ("I saw his family talking about him after the fact, so you get a little bit different image maybe").
Trump also said that he is "a tremendous believer in the police," making sure to note that police "are great people." But he also recognized that even among great people, "you always have problems."
He added: "These things are terrible... And the police are aware of that too. By the way, the police are troubled by that too, the police see it too."
Trump went on to say that he is "very, very troubled" by the actions of the Tulsa officer. He said: "People that choke, people that do that, maybe they can't be doing what they're doing."
PASTOR DARRELL SCOTT: This is the final question, I just added it. It is a question that involves all Americans, not just black Americans. This is a question that is on everyone's mind, and I feel honored to be able to ask you this question and for you to be able to answer it for the first time.
All the media is here... Your response is going to reverberate around this planet, so take your time to think it through.
What do you have to say about the recent shootings of unarmed black men by the police, up to and including the North Carolina one yesterday and the shooting in Tulsa the day before?
DONALD J. TRUMP: Well as you know, I am a tremendous believer in the police and the law enforcement, because we need that for ourselves, we do, we really do. And I have gotten the endorsement of so many different police groups. And they are great people, they are great people.
Now, great people, you always have problems. Somebody in there that either makes a mistake, that is bad, or that chokes.
I must tell you, I watched the shooting in particular in Tulsa, and that man was hands up, that man went to the car, hands up, put his hand on the car. To me it looked like he did everything you're supposed to do.
And he looked like a really good man -- maybe I'm a little clouded because I saw his family talking about him after the fact, so you get a little bit different image maybe. But to me it looked like someone who was doing what they were asking him to do.
And this young officer, I don't know what she was thinking. I don't know what she was thinking. But I'm very, very troubled by that. I'm very, very troubled by that. And we have to be very careful.
So, these things are terrible. In my opinion, that was a terrible situation. And we've seen others. And the police are aware of that too. By the way, the police are troubled by that too, the police see it too.
Was she scared? Was she choking? What happened? But maybe people like that, people that choke, people that do that, maybe they can't be doing what they're doing. They can't be doing what they're doing.
So we all respect our police greatly, and they will just have to get better and better and better.