A California officer has been accused of shooting and killing Hans Kevin Arellano, 22, (left) after a confrontation where the unarmed man called the officer a “bitch.” The shooting was captured on a cell phone video and the witness says that the shooting was unprovoked and unjustified.
The witness was in the parking lot of the Harbor Place Shopping Center in Santa Ana around 3 p.m. when the confrontation occurred in front of a juice shop. He said that he saw the officer exit from her patrol car with her gun drawn — a key point since officers are not supposed to draw their weapons absent a clear potential threat. The witness says that she told Arellano, who is described as homeless, to get on the ground and that he responded “What are you gonna do, bitch?” The witness says that the officer shot Arellano just a second or so after the comment.
Police say that they were unaware of the video and would study it.
Even without the video, there would seem to be ample reason for investigation when an unarmed man is shot and killed within minutes of the arrival of an officer. There are only a couple of possible defenses. One is that the man attacked the officer in contradiction to the account of the witness (who was standing at some distance way). Another is that the man appeared to reach for a weapon, though it would have to be shown how the encounter escalated so quickly. Finally, and this has happened, the officer could say that she confused the gun for her taser.
It is hard to believe that the officer went off simply because she was called a name. Officers face such crude remarks regularly. There appear to be no shortage of witnesses in the video, including two men close to the scene. We will be following the story to see if the officer’s account is published.
Source: Daily Mail