A bystander’s video of a stalemate between the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office and a suspected car thief that took place in Arizona on January 14, and which resulted in the shooting death of 40-year old Manuel Longoria, is raising some serious questions about the police department’s account of the incident.
Longoria had previously led the cops on an almost hour-long chase in Eloy, reportedly ramming into a patrol car before police popped the tires and immobilized the allegedly stolen Toyota Corolla that he was driving.
According to police and eyewitness accounts, Longoria exited the car but refused to give up telling the cops that he had a gun and would not be “taken alive”. The police then fired several bean bag and Taser rounds at the tow-truck driver before one deputy fired his gun twice, killing him. There was no gun found in the car, or on Longoria.
As reported by CBS5 News, the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office issued the following statement after the incident:
“Officers and deputies attempted to use less lethal means to take him into custody including firing several bean bag rounds and Taser deployments. The suspect refused to obey the commands and suddenly reached back into the vehicle. A deputy felt the suspect was reaching for the gun he reportedly had, so he then fired two rounds.”
However, a video shot by an eyewitness tells a different story as, while Longoria did indeed turn around and face the car, after the cops shot the bean bag rounds, he placed his hands above his head – and that’s when the cop shot him in the back.
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