Patrick Warren body cam footage released
The police department said that Reynaldo Contreras found Warren in a state of emotional distress
Newly released body cam footage of a police officer fatally shooting a Black man during a mental health check has been released on Tuesday, and the chief of police in Killeen, Texas is defending the officer’s actions.
Killeen police officer Reynaldo Contreras shot Patrick Warren, Sr., 52, after police received a call requesting psychiatric help on Jan. 10.
As previously mentioned by theGrio, Warren’s family requested a mental health professional be sent to the home. Instead, Contreras arrived and “encountered an emotionally distressed man” who he was “not prepared to handle,” Lee Merritt, the civil rights attorney who is representing the family, said during a press conference days after the shooting.
The police department said in a statement that Contreras found Warren in a state of emotional distress upon his arrival at a home in the 1600 block of Carrollton Avenue in Killeen, and the body cam video shows the tense moments that led to Contreras firing his weapon at Warren three times.
According to CNN, the video shows Contreras letting himself into the home after he is told by someone inside to “come on in.” Contreras quickly exits after Warren begins to yell and advance towards him.
Warren can be seen outside a residence advancing toward Contreras in the front yard and ignoring verbal commands for him to lie down. After the officer steps backward and continues to issue warnings, like “You’re gonna get tased,” he uses the taser twice on Warren before deploying his firearm.
Contreras was placed on administrative leave after the shooting, which Killeen Police and the Texas Rangers are investigating.
Merritt, has called for the officer to be fired. “This is one of the worst officer-involved shootings that I’ve seen,” Merritt told reporters earlier this week after the body camera footage was released,
Killeen Police Chief Charles Kimble said, “I don’t see where he could have done anything else. I saw an officer try to handle a call, de-escalate a call,” Kimble told reporters on Tuesday. “Given the same set of circumstances, I just don’t know what else we could do,” he added.
Kimble said Contreras had more than the minimum amount of mandated training, but he said the police department was looking at ways to better address psychiatric calls.
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