ROSEVILLE — In response tointo April's deadly Mahany Park shooting in Roseville, the California Highway Patrol on Monday released never-before-seen dash camera footage from the initial moments of the shootout.
For seven months, we've been fighting for answers and access to the full video from that day.
However, the Roseville Police Department, which has taken over the investigation, has refused to release more than 39 seconds of body camera footage, telling us, "None of the CHP officers were wearing body-worn cameras upon initial contact with the suspect."
When CBS13 first requested CHP's dash camera video of the incident this summer, CHP claimed the video did not exist, stating:
After a diligent and thorough search, in accordance with Government Code section 7923.625, personnel assigned to the Public Records Unit (PRU) have determined the Department does not possess responsive records.
Turns out they do have responsive records.
After months of requests, CBS Sacramento finally obtained the video from the one marked CHP cruiser that was at Mahany Park to back up the undercover agents who were serving the warrant on Eric Abril.
The 25-minute video, which CBS Sacramento exclusively obtained Monday, appears to begin just after the suspect allegedly fired the initial shots at a CHP officer. You can see at least four undercover officers running toward the batting cages, where we now know children were diving for cover from the crossfire.
The shootout began with a controversial decision by the highway patrol to serve a planned, high-risk search warrant to an armed felon at a public park during the peak of spring break – without notifying local police. It ended with local law enforcement coming to the CHP's rescue.
Local police are still refusing to release body camera and drone footage, and Placer County is refusing to release the victim's autopsy report, which has many asking: what are they hiding?
In part two of our series, Julie Watts investigates the public's right to those public records.
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