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'See me as human. Don't see me as a pigment or color or different' | Terrence Sterling's friends hope his name is remembered amid BLM protests

Terrence Sterling was shot and killed by D.C. police in 2016.

WASHINGTON — We've heard the name George Floyd at the center of the protest against police brutality all across the nation. Many other names like Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and Eric Garner are being spoken as thousands took to D.C. streets demanding justice.

Anthony Dixon is hoping the name Terrence Sterling will be added to the list.

"If they had just been able to see his smile, through his helmet, you would know that this guy was no threat to anybody," Dixon said.

Dixon knew Sterling since he was a young boy and watched him grow into a young, and very loved man.

"When he graduated from high school, he started working for me. I have an air conditioning, heating company, so he's been working with me since he was 19, and he was killed at 31," Dixon said.

Sterling was shot and killed by D.C. police in 2016.

"As he was getting ready to go through the light, the police on the passenger side shot him from inside the car. He was shot in the neck and in the back and he died on his motorcycle," Dixon added.

He was heading home after celebrating his friend who was getting married. He was unarmed. The officer, Brian Trainer, was terminated by MPD after an internal review board ruled Trainer had violated police policy because he turned on his body camera after shooting Sterling through his car window.

"He, from my understanding, was forced to resign and, in my opinion, when you're forced to resign, that just gives you opportunity to go get a job somewhere else," Dixon said.

RELATED: Officer involved fatal shooting of Terrence Sterling fired

D.C. reached a settlement with Sterling's family for $3.5 million after the shooting was ruled unjustified by the police department. However, prosecutors said there was not enough evidence to charge Trainer.

Today, Dixon is proud of the protest he’s seeing around the nation. The calls to eradicate racism are encouraging. Yet he says he’s disgusted by the reason people have to rally at all.

"See me as human. Don't see me as a pigment, or color or different, see me as a human, and see me as a man," Dixon said.

In the fight to disarm inequality around the nation, Terrence Sterling is a name Dixon is hoping people will remember as the calls for justice grow louder.

"I mean, we need some equality. We don't need a handout, we need an even chance," Dixon said.

RELATED: Officer ‘broke policy’ in fatal shooting of Terrence Sterling

RELATED: Protests continue 1 year after shooting death of Terrence Sterling

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