Fort Worth officers are claiming in affidavits that they killed an innocent man, Jerry Waller, 72, after going to the wrong house on a burglary charge and mistook Jerry Waller, 72, in the poor lighting at 12:51 am. The incident is drawing criticism and calls for an independent investigation of the two rookie officers.
The home did not have outside lighting and the officers used flashlights to investigate. The encountered Waller near the corner of his garage. The officers insist that they declared themselves to be police and ordered Waller to drop his handgun. They say that he disobeyed their commands and pointed the gun at them. There is no record of Waller actually discharging the weapon.
Both officers have been with the Fort Worth Police Department for less than one year.
One discrepancy is that the officers said that they encountered Waller “at the back of his house near the garage and driveway.” Yet, the autopsy report says that Waller was shot in his garage. That is a significant difference since the chances that they are encountering a homeowner is higher inside the home.
Of course, the officers can argue that even a homeowner can be a threat to their lives if he is pointing a gun at them and not responding to police commands. The problem is that there are only three witnesses and Waller is dead. The only basis to challenge the account will be forensics if the trajectory of the bullet and location of the victim conflict with the sworn statement of the officers.
Source: Daily Mail