Jacob Blake, the Black man who was shot seven times by a Kenosha police officer, said that he believed he was going to die and shared what he thought would be his final words with his children, who watched from the back seat as their bleeding father counted his breaths and blinks: "Daddy love you, no matter what."
Blake, 29, was partially paralyzed in the Aug. 23 shooting that touched off days of protests and unrest in the Wisconsin city and elsewhere.
In an interview that aired Thursday, Blake told ABC's "Good Morning America" that he was taking his kids, on one of their birthdays, to a store to get away from an argument their mom was having with her neighbor.
Blake described a chaotic scene in which his kids were crying, people were screaming and his ears were ringing.
He said police did not tell him he was under arrest or that they had a warrant for his arrest.
Police deployed a taser on Blake. In his ABC interview, Blake said he had his hands up when he was electrocuted and stunned and fell onto another officer.
Blake and Kenosha police officer Rusten Sheskey fought after Blake pulled the taser barbs from his skin. After they separated, Blake said he picked up a dropped pocket knife and walked back to the driver's door of his car, where his son was crying.
"I shouldn't have picked it up only considering what was going on," Blake said, adding that he was not "thinking clearly."
Blake said he was not worried he would be shot because he was walking away from the home and the police officer.
In the video, as Blake reaches the car, a police officer grabs Blake's shirt and begins to shoot.
"I kind of sat down in the car trying to do this,” Blake said, leaning to one side of his wheelchair.
"I put my hands up, because I didn't want him to shoot my face or in my head or nothing, he just kept shooting, he kept shooting," Blake said.
"I kind of went limp," Blake said. "And all I remember at that point was kind of leaning back, looking at my boys. I said, 'Daddy love you, no matter what.'"
"I thought it was going to be the last — I thought it was going to be the last thing I say to them," he said, his voice breaking. "Thank God it wasn't."
The interview comes a week after Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley announced that no police officers would be charged in the shooting.
I didn't wanna be the next George Floyd. I didn't wanna die.
Jacob Blake During his shooting
Blake was shot seven times by Sheskey. Some of those shots were found to have come from the back.
Sheskey was answering a domestic disturbance call at the time and officers were told Blake had a warrant for his arrest, officials said. Blake resisted arrest while armed with a knife and refused commands to drop it, the district attorney said.
Blake was shot after moving toward a "disputed car" that had at least one child in it, Graveley said. He said Blake admitted to investigators he had a knife but wasn't sure if he'd opened it.
Graveley said that Sheskey and other officers would have had a strong case for self-defense, and that "if you don't believe you can prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt, you have an ethical obligation not to issue charges."
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The shooting was captured on video and sparked protests over the summer that at times turned violent as protesters called for racial justice and police reform.
Amid the protests in Kenosha, Kyle Rittenhouse, now 18, who'd gone to Kenosha from nearby Antioch, Illinois, allegedly shot and killed two men. Rittenhouse has been criminally charged and lawyers for him have claimed that he acted in self-defense.
That death was on his mind during his near-fatal interaction with Kenosha police officers: "I didn't wanna be the next George Floyd," Blake said. "I didn't wanna die."