Phoenix police kill ex-NFL player Ekom Udofia, bodycam footage shows
Police used pepper balls and a dog on Udofia, responding to calls that a man was acting erratically.
Police in Phoenix, Arizona have released body-camera video showing former NFL player Ekom Udofia being shot to death by officers at least 10 times.
The shooting occurred on Nov. 30, and the bodycam footage was released as part of the department’s critical incident briefings, in which they inform the media about police-involved shootings.
The footage shows Phoenix Police officers deploying stun bags, pepper balls and a dog on Udofia after responding to a call that a man was acting erratically near traffic.
Officers were told that the man appeared to be on drugs, and when they responded, they found Udofia, 33, holding what appeared to be a gun.
“Please drop the gun, dude!” one officer yelled. “Please, please do not make me shoot you!”
As Udofia continued to approach the car, the officer yelled, “Dude, I got to shoot him, bro!”
The officers fire on Udofia, who drops to the ground. He is then ordered to move away from the weapon; other officers respond. Udofia is fired on again and bitten by a police dog after pointing what turned out to be a BB gun at them.
The Nigerian, Scottsdale-raised Udofia has struggled in recent years with mental health issues. He’d been arrested for petty crimes including disorderly conduct and indecent exposure and was reportedly meeting the resulting probation requirements.
“Additionally, he does not view himself as a bad person and believes he needs more help with his mental health than jail time,” court documents show, according to AZ Central. “His criminal history has all been mental health-related, and he is in a good place now.”
The officers who shot Udofia have been identified as Ryan Hoffrichter, Lance Wisuri, Nathaniel Hansen and Steve Mead. The Phoenix Police Department is investigating the shooting. If criminal action is found, the case will be referred to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office.
Udofia played defensive tackle with the Cincinnati Bengals and New Orleans Saints after attending Stanford University, where he majored in public policy.