West Valley City Police and the Salt Lake City Police Department on Wednesday released full-body camera footage showing police shooting dead a man after a standoff in Taylorsville on Dec.
Anei Gabriel Joker, 20, was attacked multiple times during a shootout with police in the 7-Eleven parking lot at 4110 S. Redwood Road, just inside the Taylorsville city limits. He died in the hospital later that night.
Footage from cameras worn by several officers at the scene began about two minutes before shooting and captured the sequence of events from various vantage points around the parking lot. More than one clip shows the Joker’s brother witnessing the shooting. Another captured the moment a West Valley City detective was shot twice, once in the left shoulder and once in the left leg.
Officers from multiple agencies were on the scene on December 1, including 10 officers from the West Valley police department and several from the Salt Lake police department, according to separate reports. Two officers from Salt Lake City police opened fire on Joker, one of the released said, while others from that division were stationed around the perimeter of the parking lot. It’s unclear how many West Valley City officers opened fire on the Joker.
According to West Valley police, officers searched for Joker, who is black, on December 1 in connection with a rape and robbery investigation. They found him in a convenience store car with two other adults.
Negotiate before the penalty shootout
Officers surrounded the vehicle that was parked next to 7-Eleven’s gas pumps and ordered everyone inside to get out, West Valley Deputy City Manager Mike Fossmo said in a video conference. Two other adults run outside, but Joker refuses.
Others told officers that a 9-month-old infant remained in the home with Joker, Fossmo said. After the police negotiated with Joker for about 50 minutes, he agreed to allow two United Police Department officers to remove the baby from the vehicle. A clip shows staff members picking up the child through the back door of the vehicle.
Next, an officer continues to negotiate with the Joker in an attempt to get him to surrender, as heard in footage released by West Valley City police.
“We can guarantee your safety at this point,” an officer loudly calls the Joker. “Joker, this is not going to end, we are not leaving. Let’s go with empty hands”.
In the background of the same video, another voice says: “He is ignoring us. He can hear us,” referring to Joker.
About 30 minutes after the baby was removed from the car, and after about 1 minute and 40 seconds of negotiating over the released footage, an officer deployed a pepper bomb on the vehicle in a series of consecutive popping sounds. Just before that, officers in footage were recorded from the back of a police car discussing the use of pepper bombs to “see if that can be achieved.” [Joker] to go out. ”
Fossmo said pepper bombs are hollow shells filled with powder. On impact, they break apart and release “a nasty pepper cloud”.
Seconds later in the footage, several officers say, “Guns! Guns! Guns! ” before Joker opens the passenger side door. He can be seen holding a gun in his right hand. The officers shouted, “Don’t do that!” Then a series of gunshots rang out.
West Valley Police spokeswoman Roxeanne Vainuku previously said that Joker got out of his car to fire his weapon. Immediately after the shot, footage captured from another angle shows the Joker lying on the ground next to the car. A K-9 ran up to him, then grabbed the back of his shirt with its teeth and pulled him out of the vehicle. The officers shouted “Grab his hand!” and, “Roll him!” when some people cough continuously due to pepper bombs.
In addition to the detective who was beaten in the gunfight, an officer of the Unified Police was also beaten and injured. He was hospitalized and released, police said.
Brother witnessed the shooting
No combined footage released by the two police departments shows Joker receiving medical help after he was shot. Police noted in separate bulletins on Wednesday that the footage had been trimmed and edited for distribution.
Footage released by the Salt Lake City Police also captures a scuffle involving officers and Joker’s brother at the edge of the scene.
Moments before the gas pump shooting, on the other side of the parking lot, Joker’s brother was seen walking along the sidewalk. When the officers noticed the Black man, they pulled him to the ground, and when gunfire broke out, they pulled him into the road and pulled him back along the side of the road. The man shouted, “Are you kidding? You killed my brother! ” then the officers rolled him over so that he was face down on the ground.
An officer then handcuffs the man, keeping his knee in the middle of the man’s back. Crying and screaming, Joker’s brother yelled, “Take off these cuffs for me, I’m not doing anything” and asked the officers why he was cuffed. One officer replied, “Listen, it’s because you’re not listening.”
Salt Lake City police said in a statement that officers put his brother in the back of a police car so he wouldn’t get hit, then handcuffed him “for his safety.” . He was released from custody, police said.
Vainuku said in a video conference released on Wednesday, Vainuku said the fatal shooting incident on December 1 was being investigated by the Serious Incident Protocol Team which involved the independent officer, under the supervision of the Cottonwood Heights Police Department. She said officers were still in the “very early” stages of the investigation.
The Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office will then decide whether the officers’ use of force was justifiable. The office on Thursday declined to comment on the case, citing an ongoing investigation.
According to law enforcement records, Joker has been shot dead by police before. In 2017, when Joker was a teenager, he shot and wounded by a Cottonwood Heights officer after a chase reaching speeds of more than 100 mph.
This is the 29th police shooting this year in Utah. The state record is 30 police shootings in a year, achieved in both 2020 and 2018.
https://www.sltrib.com/news/2021/12/16/brother-utah-man-killed/ Utah man’s brother killed by police while witnessing fatal shooting, bodycam footage shows