VIDEO: Utah Shooting Footage

Bodycam footage shows officers faced with a terrible decision, clears officer of charges

By Calibre Press  |   Jun 5, 2015

On Aug. 11, 2014, Salt Lake police were called to a report of a possible man with a gun near 2100 South and State Street. A witness claimed three men were flashing a gun in the area.

Cruz was in the area and arrived first. He spotted the three men based on the witness description and observed their actions. As they went into a 7-Eleven, 2102 S. State, he called for backup and waited for the trio to walk out, believing that at least one of them was armed, Gill said.

The body camera video from Cruz shows that as he drove his car into the 7-Eleven parking lot, two of the men — Taylor’s brother and cousin — immediately stop and put their hands in the air. Taylor holds his head down and keeps walking.

Believing that he had a gun, Cruz follows Taylor with his own gun now drawn. Another officer approaches from the other end of the parking lot. In the video, Cruz can clearly be heard yelling, “Get your hands up now.”

Dillon Taylor, 20, is clearly looking at the officer but refuses to take his hands out of his waistband as he was ordered to do and continues to walk backwards.

“No, fool,” Taylor is heard saying.

Moments later, Taylor quickly lifts his shirt and takes his hands out of his waistband. Salt Lake police officer Bron Cruz reacts by firing two quick shots, striking Taylor in the chest and stomach. Taylor died as a result of his injuries.

No weapon was ever found on Taylor.

But based on the totality of the situation — and based largely on what the video from the incident shows as recorded by the body camera Cruz was wearing — Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill determined Tuesday that the shooting was legally justified.

The fatal shooting sparked outrage from the family and some members of the community who claimed Taylor was shot in the back while walking away from officers and that Taylor couldn’t hear them because he was wearing in-ear headphones.

 

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Calibre Press has 37 years in the business of keeping officers safer, smarter and more successful, from rookie to retirement.