FULLERTON (CBSLA) — Fullerton Police Friday released body cam video of an officer fatally shooting a 17-year-old girl on the freeway in Anaheim.
The officer is heard talking into his two-way mic and says “Shots fired, shots fired. I got suspect down on the freeway. I need medics, please.”
The teen’s family has been demanding answers since that deadly shooting occurred one week ago today.
Officers said they opened fire after the teenager — identified as Hannah Williams — pointed a gun at them. The gun turned out to be a replica.
CBS2/KCAL9 reporter Stacey Butler reported from Santa Ana where an attorney for the victim’s family spoke to reporters.
The lawyer was flanked by the teen’s family but they declined to talk.
Butler reported that even though OC District Attorney Todd Spitzer offered to sit down with the family and show them the video they refused to look at it.
In slow motion, Williams is shown in the “shooting stance” police said holding what appears to be a handgun.
Fullerton Police say the incident started when a K-9 officer was taking his dog to the vet on July 5 when he noticed an SUV speeding on the freeway. The officer said he tried to pull Williams over and was hit by her vehicle.
He said Williams then made an erratic U-turn, while on the freeway, and stopped and got out of her vehicle in the moments just before the fatal OIS.
Williams’ father — at an earlier press conference — said his daughter was having a great day and that she had been with family and was in good spirits.
A 911 call, also just released, tells a very different story. The father tells the dispatcher his daughter was very depressed, on anti-depressants, and he feared she would take her life.
Butler asked S. Lee Merritt — the Williams family attorney — about the call.
“Most of my clients suffer from some sort of mental defect,” he said, “that is causal or contributory towards the shooting. We as a nation just have to do better treating mental illness, identifying it and responding to it. This officer had very little time to make that kind of analysis, in this case. We appreciate that. The family knows, he came around and saw a person in a shooting stance and it’s difficult to make a split-second decision in that manner. We can’t exonerate him at this point but we certainly can’t condemn him.”
During the 911 call, the dispatcher asked Williams’ dad if his daughter was white, black, Asian or Latina. He replied “white.” Williams is bi-racial.
Spitzer says he wants to work to avoid misinformation in the media.
“Originally,” he says, “it came out Fullerton police officers kill an unarmed 17-year-old African-American girl. That as a headline is explosive.”