A black man left paralysed after being shot seven times by police in the US has released a video from his hospital bed, saying constant pain means it hurts to breathe and even sleep.
Jacob Blake, whose shooting in Wisconsin on 23 August has reignited the Black Lives Matter protests over police violence and racial injustice in America, also called for change – and warned how quickly the things people take for granted in life can be taken away.
In the footage, the 29-year-old wears a green gown and speaks from his bed in hospital in the city of Milwaukee.
“There’s a lot more life to live out here… your life, and not only just your life, your legs – something that you need to move around and move forward in life – can be taken from you like this, man,” he said, snapping his fingers.
“And I promise you the type of s*** that you will go through; staples… I got staples in my back, staples in my damn stomach. You do not want to have to deal with this s*** man.
“Twenty-four hours, every 24 hours is pain… it hurts to breathe, it hurts to sleep, it hurts to move from side to side, it hurts to eat.”
Mr Blake called on those watching to make a change for the better.
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“Please, I’m telling you, change your lives out there,” he said. “We can stick together, make some money, make everything easier for our people out here, man, because there’s so much time that has been wasted.”
The clip was released on Twitter by Mr Blake’s attorney, Ben Crump, who said: “Jacob Blake released this powerful video message from his hospital bed today, reminding everyone just how precious life is. #JusticeForJacobBlake.”
It comes after Mr Blake appeared in court via video-link, also from his hospital bed, pleading not guilty to criminal trespass, third-degree sexual assault and disorderly conduct – charges brought before the shooting in Kenosha, a city about 40 miles south of Milwaukee.
He has been left paralysed from the waist down after being shot by a white police officer as he was walking back to his vehicle. Mr Crump says he was trying to break up a domestic dispute.
‘Nobody has reached out to us’: The view on the ground in Kenosha
All three officers present when he was shot are on administrative leave, pending an investigation by the Wisconsin Department of Justice.
The US justice department said a knife was recovered from an SUV Mr Blake was leaning into when he was shot, but has not said whether he was holding it when officers tried to arrest him.