Police Abuse

Judge Orders Release of Video in Fatal San Diego Police Shooting

Fridoon Rawshan Nehad was shot once in the chest by a cop who said he had no doubt Nehad, found with a pen, was going to stab him.

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NBC San Diego

In April, Officer Neal Browder of the San Diego Police Department shot Fridoon Rawshan Nehad from 20 feet away once in the chest after responding to a call about a knife-wielding transient threatening a porn shop clerk who told him he couldn't sleep in the alley behind the store. Browder did not turn on his body camera before leaving his vehicle, but part of the incident was caught on a nearby surveillance camera.

Authorities seized the footage as part of their investigation, and in November the district attorney decided not to pursue charges against the officers. The district attorney, Bonnie Dumanis, resisted releasing the footage but was required to after a judge sided with local media outlets and lifted a protective order for the video. So, via NBC San Diego:

Dumanis on Tuesday released surveillance video showing the moment Browder shot Nehad, along with body camera video from another officer, additional store surveillance footage, enhanced video of Nehad, still frames and a transcript of the dispatch officer communication from before, during and after the shooting.

The unprecedented move by the DA's office was to put the surveillance video in perspective, Dumanis said.

Dumanis said she did not want to release the video because of "a legal duty not to do anything that could prejudice a jury in a criminal trial," presumably other than deciding not to press charges or recommend disciplinary action—an attorney for the city mentioned a possible federal review when arguing against the release of the video in court, although the Department of Justice wouldn't confirm or deny a review to local media.

Browder told investigators there was no doubt in his mind Nehad was going to stab him. The police investigated why Browder didn't turn on his police body camera, and changed their policy to require cops to turn their cameras on before exiting a vehicle, not when first making contact with a suspect. Browder ended up back on the street, illustrating why body cameras don't work without transparency.

Activists from Black Lives Matter have started targeting police union contracts, often some of the biggest impediments to more transparency. The San Diego Police Officers' Association said it continued to have concerns "regarding the release of evidence in ongoing investigations, as it may jeopardize the rights of both officers and citizens now and in future cases."

Nehad's family, who says Nehad, a veteran of the Afghan Army, was mentally ill, have filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the police department.

Watch the surveillance video below:

h/t Scott F.

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  1. I really need to become a cop. Then I could shoot my idiot brother-in-law. He’s always armed, so it could be excused no matter what, and he’s white, so there’d be no outcry.

  2. He was sure he was going to stab him? He was 25 feet away and waited two milliseconds before firing. What was he going to do, throw the knife (pen) at him?

    1. 17 feet. Don’t you know you’re dead if anyone with a knife is within 21 feet? If course he could have just gotten back in his car or, I know this is crazy, backed up and gotten behind his car.

      1. Yeah, but there might have been surveillance cameras.

        The cop knows he can get away with killing the man – he’d never live down the video of him being chased around his cruiser to ‘Yakety Sax’.

        1. No footage from his body cam he “forgot” to turn on.

    2. Hey, have you ever faced down some lunatic waving around some sort of highlander style claymore? And remember, the pen is even mightier than that.

      1. Of course…there can be only one.

    3. Waited? The pig shot him as soon as he got out of the car and was able to draw his weapon and fire. There was no confrontation at all. The guy was just walking, he didn’t even raise his arms or anything.

  3. Dumanis said she did not want to release the video because of “a legal duty not to do anything that could prejudice a jury in a criminal trial,”

    wut

    1. Makes sense since she declined to press charges.

      I always thought the decision as to whether or not something was justified was a question for the jury?

      1. If she declined to press charges the jury becomes irrelevant. No need to hide the video to keep from prejudicing a jury that will never exist.

      2. Oh, I get why she wanted to continue covering up a murder-by-cop.

    2. Makes sense since she declined to press charges.

      I always thought the decision as to whether or not something was justified was a question for the jury?

  4. Another case of a cop in the open who decides to kill instead of just BACKING UP!

    BTW, anyone else find it infuriating that the illegal who shot the girl in San Fran with an accidental ricochet shot is being tried for murder while the cop who shot the dui guy gets off because it was an “accident”?

    1. Or the cop in the story posted here the other day who “slipped while trying to shoot a dog” and ended up killing a woman in front of her 4 year old kid.

    2. I don’t think he could have fired any faster. From opening the door to opening fire was way too quick to do a threat assessment. He had to have determined to fire before opening the door.

      His excuse that he was in fear of being stabbed is laughable. Forget backing up, he didn’t even take a breath. There is nothing that guy could have done in that alley to avoid being killed.

      1. Well turning on his body cam would have surely slowed him down a bit. In fact while he was fumbling around with the stupid cam’s on switch the perp might have gotten away!

        Who knows what the perp might have done if he had escaped. He could have slept in the alley behind some poor unsuspecting business. Some guy leaving the porn shop might have seen a homeless guy and had his whole visit ruined.

  5. Browder did not turn on his body camera before leaving his vehicle,…

    Nothing to hide. Trust me.

    1. They changed the policy. What more do you want?

      1. Sensitivity classes! Additional training! All at double overtime rates!

  6. “jeopardize the rights of both officers and citizens”

    Officers are citizens, motherfuckers

    1. Better than when they refer to non-officers as “civilians”.

      1. Agreed, much better. Notice who they listed first, by the way….

    2. Some citizens are more equal than others.

  7. So who else has noticed the re-branding to “Gun Violence”. That’s some pretty nice spin there, eh?

    1. I prefer my violence in ultra flavor.

  8. These trigger-happy cops should be charged and tried under the same rules that a private citizen with a concealed carry permit would face.

    1. A private citizen’s fire wouldn’t be so precise.

  9. Christ, but that’s disturbing. Nehad was walking in that direction before Browder even showed up, as far as I can tell, and far from charging or anything, he actually slows down almost to a stop when Browder starts to get out of the car.

    1. The sad thing is, they already knew he was 50-60 years old, obviously not too steady on his feet, and walking slowly. The cop would have had plenty of time to shoot if it had been necessary. It doesn’t even look like he took the time to announce “Stop or I’ll shoot!”. WTF?

  10. I think it is clever to sidestep the 4th amendment with police contracts.

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