COPA releases body cam video in police shooting that killed man in Irving Park alley
CHICAGO (CBS) -- The Civilian Office of Police Accountability on Wednesday released video and other materials from a police shooting that killed a man in an Irving Park neighborhood alley last month.
Outgoing police Supt. David Brown initially said there was an "exchange of gunfire" in the incident, but it appears the suspect may not actually have fired his weapon.
Brown said around 3:08 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 8, officers responded to a call for a person with a gun in the 3700 block of North Troy Street. He said a security guard at Christina's Place, at 3759 N. Kedzie Ave. at Grace Street, heard people arguing and saw a man point a gun at other people.
Police came to the scene and began engaging with a man walking nearby, suspecting he was the one involved, COPA said. Two officers got out and pursued the man on foot, ordering him to get on the ground, COPA said.
The man ran into an alley and fell to the ground, and officers ordered him to stay there, COPA said. As he began to get up, both officers fired multiple times and the man died, COPA said.
Body cam video from one officer who fired the shots yelling at the suspect to, "Get on the f***ing ground," and then to "stay down" before shots are fired. The suspect is not seen clearly in this video until after the shots are fired.
Body cam video from the other officer who fired shots appears to show the suspect on the ground, then starting to get up, at which point the officer is seen firing shots form some distance away. In the second officer's body cam video, the sound does not come in until after the shots were fired.
The man police shot was identified as 21-year-old Isidro Valverde.
The scene is behind the New Apostolic Church at Troy and Grace streets. Valverde is seen lying in the alley behind the church up against a wrought iron fence in front of a parking lot.
Brown said after the shooting that the man fired at police, and police fired back. But COPA later said it was not clear whether that was the case.
COPA confirmed a gun was found. COPA also said it is possible that the suspect's gun discharged as he tried to get up from the ground.
"As a part of COPA's full and thorough investigation, we will consider the totality of the circumstances known to officers, their decision to engage in a foot pursuit, the discharge of the individual's weapon as he began to get up and whether the officers' use of deadly force was in accordance with Department policy and training," COPA First Deputy Chief Administrator Ephraim Eaddy said in a news release.
Before the shooting, a security guard -- who went by his last name, Miranda -- told CBS 2 he called police after a customer pulled out a gun on him outside of the bar. He said that customer was yelling gang slogans.
The security guard said Valverde was at the bar having a few drinks and went outside to smoke.
"I just noticed that the vibe was not right," Miranda said.
So Miiranda went outside to check.
"I stepped outside to see what was going on and the young man pulled out a gun on me," the guard said. "And he pointed it at me and told me, 'You know, I'm this type of gang, I'm this type of gang.' I told him, I said -- put my hands up in the air -- and said: 'Brother, we're not about that. All we are is about serving liquor and having a good time.' And that's where it ended."
The guard told CBS 2 he heard shots minutes after police arrived.
Surveillance video from a nearby business – taken before the police shooting – appears to show the suspect pulling a gun on a man, who puts his hands up and starts backing away.
Video also appears to show the suspect running down a residential block as two officers chase him.
Anyone with further information is asked to call COPA at (312) 746-3609, or go to ChicagoCOPA.org.
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