Oscar Grant: Eyewitness Karina Vargas

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The shooting of 22-year-old Oscar Grant by former Bay Area Rapid Transit officer Johannes Mehserle  on New Year’s Day of 2009 resulted in massive protests in Oakland, and now a feature film about  the shooting hits  selected theaters Friday.

Fruitvale was called one of Sundance’s Festival’s standout films of this year. It was directed by Oakland native Ryan Coogler and produced by Forest Whitaker. The film follows Grant through the last 24 hours of his life.

Grant was shot on the Fruitvale BART station platform, in view of other train passengers. Karina Vargas was only 15 feet from Grant when she recorded the shooting. Vargas testified on the first day of Mehserle’s preliminary hearing.

Vargas returned to the scene of the shooting for the first time in this interview with Youth Radio. Vargas recounts her memory of that night, and shares her footage of the shooting on the Fruitvale BART platform.

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