As has been previously reported here on the CopBlock Network several times, Daniel Shaver was visiting Mesa, Arizona from Texas on a business trip in January of this year. During that trip, he was shot to death by Mesa Police Officer Philip Brailsford. Ofc. Brailsford has since been charged with second degree murder for the shooting.
Now, more details have been released concerning the circumstances leading up to the shooting. Those details include descriptions from the body camera footage and it does not paint Brailsford or the Mesa police in a good light. In fact, it could not sound worse.
According to that newly released police report, Shaver was following the orders of the officers at the time he was murdered. Furthermore, the report states that as Shaver was crawling on his hands and knees he was audibly crying and begging for his life before Officer Brailsford executed him with five shots of his rifle. The apparent justification that Brailsford used for his actions was that Shaver had touched his waist in order to pull his shorts up.
Via the New York Daily News:
An unarmed man who was shot and killed by an Arizona police officer in January cried, complied with police orders and begged for his life before the fatal firing, according to a newly released police report.
Mesa Police Officer Philip Brailsford has been charged with second-degree murder for the death of Daniel Shaver, a 26-year-old Texas man. Authorities have declined to release Brailsford’s body cam footage from the deadly encounter.
But a report released Tuesday includes extensive description of the footage, detailing Shaver’s desperate final moments before Brailsford fired five shots at him with an AR-15 rifle.
Police confronted Shaver January 8 after responding to reports of a man pointing a rifle out the fifth-floor window of a La Quinta hotel.
The night of his death, Shaver had invited a man and woman at the hotel to his room for drinks, according to the report.
After some shots of rum, the man asked Shaver about a case that appeared to hold a musical instrument. Shaver opened it to reveal a pellet gun and dead sparrow inside. Shaver told them he was on a business trip with Wal-Mart and “his job is to kill all of the birds that get inside the buildings,” according to the report.
Shaver then briefly pointed the pellet gun out the window.
When police found Shaver, they warned him that he “may not survive” if he did anything that could be considered a threat, the report says.
Brailsford’s body cam shows Shaver appeared to making small jerking motions while he had his hands behind his back, according to the report.An officer yelled at him, “If you do that again, we are shooting you. Do you understand?”
“No, please don’t shoot me,” Shaver said.
The footage shows Shaver complying with all other orders, including a demand to crawl toward the officers, as he is “audibly heard sobbing.”At one point, Shaver’s hand appeared to move toward his waist. An officer was heard yelling, “Don’t,” before Brailsford fired.
Shaver was not armed. His hand motion appeared to be him “attempting to pull his shorts up as they were falling off,” the report says.
It’s now quite obvious why the Mesa Police Department has so adamantly refused to release the body camera footage of Shaver’s murder by Brailsford and has even tried to have it formally sealed. The fact that Brailsford had “You’re Fucked” inscribed on the AR-15 he used to execute Shaver had already painted him as a callous and aggressive person. The video of an innocent, unarmed father of two and husband of a pregnant woman being killed as he crawled on his hands and knees crying and begging for his life takes that to a whole different level.
As I posted about last week, it’s been reported that Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery has offered Officer Brailsford a plea deal that would include him serving no jail time at all. That would obviously be a huge miscarriage of what the police like to call justice, especially in light of this new information.
Below is a video by Shaver’s widow, Laney Sweet, discussing that proposed plea deal and the details within the newly released police report.
(Donate to the GoFundMe account that has been set up for Daniel Shaver’s family.)