Video Shows Cop Fatally Shooting Unarmed Man in Hotel

Philip Brailsford was found not guilty of murder, manslaughter this week
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 9, 2017 3:54 PM CST

Newly released police body-cam footage shows an Arizona officer fatally shooting an unarmed man as he crawls toward officers while crying "please do not shoot me," the Independent reports. According to KPHO, former Mesa Police Department officer Philip Brailsford was found not guilty Thursday of murder and reckless manslaughter in the January 2016 death of 26-year-old Daniel Shaver at a La Quinta Inn in Mesa. Police were called to the hotel for reports of someone pointing a gun out a window. The weapon later turned out to be a pellet gun Shaver used for his pest-control job and which he was showing off to a woman in his hotel room, the Washington Post reports. When police arrived at the scene, Shaver was ordered to lie down in the hallway, put his hands in the air, and crawl toward officers.

As Shaver crawled toward officers, he reached toward his waistband. Brailsford, who testified he believed Shaver was reaching for a gun, shot him five times with an AR-15 with "You're f---ed" etched in the side. Authorities have since said it appears Shaver was trying to pull up his basketball shorts, which were falling as he crawled. And an investigator says there's no apparent reason the officers couldn't have just handcuffed Shaver, who was unarmed, while he was on the ground. A judge sided with Brailsford's lawyers and blocked the release of Brailsford's body-cam footage to the public. It was released this week upon his acquittal. Shaver's family has filed wrongful-death lawsuits against the City of Mesa. Brailsford was fired from the Mesa Police Department after two years on the job for violating department policy. (More police shooting stories.)

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