Driver ‘gunned down’ Black Lives Matter protester in Texas

Garrett Foster with his fiancée, Whitney Mitchell.

Garrett Foster with his fiancée, Whitney Mitchell. Photo: GoFundMe

A Black Lives Matter protester who was fatally shot during a Texas rally has been identified as Garrett Foster.

His mother Sheila Foster revealed to ABC’s Good Morning America that her son was killed while protesting peacefully with his fiancée, Whitney Mitchell.

She said he had been pushing his fiancée’s wheelchair when “this gentleman got out of his car and started firing shots, and my son was shot three times”.

The New York Times reported that Mr Foster was armed with an AK47, and that it was not unusual for him to carry a rifle in the state which allows citizens to carry guns.

Relatives of Mr Foster, who had served in the military, said he was not seeking out trouble at the march.

He and his fiancée Whitney Mitchell, who is African-American, had been taking part in protests against police brutality in Austin daily since the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, according to The New York Times.

Police said Mr Foster had approached a vehicle that had come to halt after speeding through protesters.

The driver inside then opened fire, with witnesses saying they heard at least five gunshots.

The shooting happened just before 10pm local time on Saturday as crowds demonstrating against police violence were marching through downtown Austin, police spokesperson Katrina Ratliff told reporters.

Mr Foster was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Ms Mitchell was unharmed.

“They’ve been participating in these protests almost every day for the past 50 days,” Mr Foster’s mother said.

Ms Ratliff said the driver had been detained and was co-operating with police.

In video that was streamed live on Facebook from journalists at the scene, a car can be heard honking before several shots ring out and protesters start screaming and scattering.

Police can then be seen tending to someone lying in the street.

The shooting happened during a night of protests and unrest in several US cities.

-with AAP

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