The family of a man who died after being shot by police say they’re going to use money being donated by his friends to make a lasting tribute.
James Wilson, 24, had been in an induced coma at Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital after being shot by armed Northumbria Police officers, who were responding to reports of a man in possession of a handgun in the early hours of last Tuesday in Frenchmans Way, Horsley Hill, South Shields.
After he died, a fundraising page was set up to help his family pay for the costs of his funeral.
His brother, Carl Wilson Jr, says the family has decided to have a plaque made to commemorate James’ life.
The 27-year-old said: “We’re going to use the money to make a plaque for him but we’re not sure where it’s going to go yet. It’s mainly his friends donating but there have been people who didn’t know him giving money as well, and that’s really nice.”
Carl and his relatives are facing an agonising wait for the release of James’ body so they can plan his funeral.
He said: “It’s going to be about another week before we can start making arrangements for the funeral.
“The waiting is making things harder. It’s horrible for the full family. We all miss him.
“I just wish I’d had more time to say goodbye to him. It’s killing me inside.
“He was my younger brother and I’m supposed to be there to protect him, but there was nothing I could do about it.”
James’ death is the subject of an investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).
The IPCC says its investigation into the incident is ongoing.
It revealed that a ‘non-police weapon’ was recovered from the scene. James’ family have told the Gazette that it was a BB gun.
Carl said the bullet went through James’ liver and also damaged one of his lungs.
Despite being operated on, medics were unable to save him.
James had been taken from the scene to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary before being transferred.
To make a donation, visit R.I.P James Wilson on the Go Fund Me website.