A month-and-a-half after police shot and killed 32-year-old Richard Mendoza during a traffic stop, the Los Angeles Police Department released body cameras and dash-camera footage showing incident and the moments leading up to it.
Dramatic footage shows a shootout between Los Angeles police and a gang member at point-blank range during a routine traffic stop.
“Those officers did an outstanding job,” said retired LAPD Sergeant Mike Sayre. Sayre got his first look of the footage Monday afternoon and pointed out some interesting observations.
“Everything he does alarm you,” he said of the suspect in the video.
The video shows police pull over a car in Mission Hills on July 28, 2018, around 10:15 p.m. A female officer approaches the driver’s side door as her partners approach the passenger side.
“Still on probation?” questions the officer, a sign she likely recognizes the driver from past incidents.
At one point, the officer asks the driver to get out of the car and he seems willing to comply, but very slowly. At one point, the officer opens the door for him to speed up the process. Within seconds, the driver pops out with a gun firing. One of the shots hits the female officer in the leg.
Quickly, the suspect then turns around trying to fire at the other officer, but he’s too slow. The video shows the Mendoza dropping to the ground after being shot multiple times.
Considering how quickly it all transpired, Sergeant Sayre said the two officers did a great job reacting. He says most critical incidents are over in less than three seconds.
“So, that means you have to be able to identify a problem, react to it and neutralize it within 3 seconds. That’s quick.”
Sgt Sayre also points out that LAPD officers get tactical training every other month. He points out that most departments only get training twice a year.
The Los Angeles Police Department said Mendoza died from his wounds and the female officer is recovering. A review board will continue to analyze the facts and circumstances behind the shooting and will provide a report at a later date.
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