Only a week after the shooting of an unarmed man, with his hands raised in the air, the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office has allowed the shooter back on the job. But now a video of the standoff, taken by an eye-witness to the shooting, has leaked which contradicts the Sheriff’s description of events that led to the death of a suspected car thief, who surrendered with his hands in the air.
After a lengthy chase through Casa Grande and Eloy deputies immobilized the car that Manuel Longoria was driving.
The deputies ordered Longoria to surrender as they aimed and fired their weapons – loaded with beanbag rounds – as well as tasers at him. At first Longoria waved his hands around, but then complied completely with their demands, turning his back for them to approach and handcuff him, while reaching his arms straight up into the air. That’s when officers fired.
“Officers and deputies attempted to use less lethal means to take him into custody including firing several bean bag rounds and Taser deployments. The suspect refused to obey the commands and suddenly reached back into the vehicle. A deputy felt the suspect was reaching for the gun he reportedly had, so he then fired two rounds.”
Investigators found no weapon on Longoria.
“I believe even looking at it in those circumstances, if I was a patrol officer and I was forced in that same situation, I would likely have shot him before that deputy shot him,” Sheriff Paul Babeu, said. ”This suspect sadly and regrettably when given every opportunity to surrender and to comply and obey our commands, decided not to.”
But Jess Torrez, a former Scottsdale Arizona Police Officer said that it was clear that with only one officer taking the shot, the others did not believe there was a justifiable use of lethal force against Longoria.
“You have multiple police officers on the scene and only one person makes the shot. That tells me that other officers at the scene did not feel there was justification to use deadly physical force,” Torrez explained.
Watch the video below, shot by a witness. Share your thoughts and spread the word about this latest act of police homicide against unarmed, non-resisting citizens.
(Article by M.B. David)