Video Transcripts Show Man Shot Dead By Arizona Police Was Begging For His Life
"Please don't shoot me."
According to police reports just made public, those were the words 26-year-old Daniel Shaver said before Mesa, Arizona, police officer Philip Brailsford shot him five times with a rifle on Jan. 18. The reports state that at the time of the shooting, Shaver was on the ground and complying with orders.
The altercation occurred after officers responded to a report that a rifle was being pointed out of Shaver's hotel room window.
But when they arrived, Shaver, a father of two, did not confront officers with a firearm. The papers, obtained by the Arizona Republic, contain video transcripts showing Shaver unarmed and sobbing.
"Alright, if you make a mistake, another mistake, there is a very severe possibility you are both going to get shot. Do you understand?" said one officer, according to the transcript.
"Yes, sir," Shaver replied.
At the time he was shot, the report indicates he was reaching for his waist, but the report does not suggest the movement was a threatening one. Instead, officers had instructed Shaver, who was on all fours, to rise to his knees causing his shorts to sag — "It appeared his shorts had fallen partially down his legs at that point," said the report — and he was most likely reaching to pull them up.
According to BuzzFeed, Brailsford has since been fired and faces second-degree murder charges.
The footage will not be released to the public, in part because prosecutors have agreed with defense attorneys' attempts to keep the video sealed, Arizona's ABC 15 reported.
According to BuzzFeed, Shaver's wife Laney Sweet says she has heard prosecutors are considering a plea deal in Brailsford's case, and the prosecution team informed her she could not view the footage without agreeing not to discuss its contents with the media.