A recording of an interview between North Miami Police Chief Gary Eugene and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigators proves North Miami Police Officer Jonathan Aledda was told by another officer on the scene that there was no weapon, only a toy, but he still shot unarmed behavioral therapist Charles Kinsey on July 18, 2016.
The hourlong recording was obtained by the Miami New Times Tuesday, and it reveals that after the shooting, an assistant chief lied repeatedly to Chief Eugene, and City Manager Larry Spring ignored vital evidence in the shooting.
The crime scene was mismanaged, and city government and the police department were “in disarray and plagued by infighting,” according to The Miami New Times.
Cellphone video of Kinsey, who was caring for an autistic man, being shot in the leg while he had his hands in the air made the incident a part of the national conversation on the Black Lives Matter movement. Kinsey lay prone on the ground, begging officers not to shoot him prior to being hit, reported The Root.
Even though the officer knowingly shot an unarmed submissive man laying prone on the ground, eight months after the shooting and four months after state investigators have closed their probe, Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle has yet to file any charges.
Ed Griffin, a spokesperson for Rundle’s office, told the New Times, “We are very close to coming to a decision.”
Emile Hollant is a North Miami police commander who was suspended after the shooting and is suing the city over his discipline.
Aledda’s actions were justified by union officials who said he thought the autistic man with Kinsey had a gun and not a toy truck, but Eugene’s interview with FDLE directly contradicts that.
“I heard the shooter, Officer Aledda, make a statement to the nature of, ‘Be advised, I have clear shot [at] subject,’” Eugene can be heard saying in the recording, describing the audio of the police radio just before the shooting. “Later on, a sergeant … got on the air and said, ‘I have a visual, it is a toy. Is it a toy? QRX.’ That means, ‘Stand by, don’t do anything.’ Then, there is a conversation back and forth. The next transmission was by [another officer saying] ‘Shot fired!’”
“The scene was a mess, to be honest with you,” he tells investigators of the Kinsey shooting. “People were walking all over the place. Thank God [Kinsey] did not die. I realized I have a problem with the training of my staff. We’re talking about some 15- or 16-year veterans, but in North Miami, a 15- or 16-year veteran may have less experience than a two-year cop in Miami.”
This police department obviously has deep troubles. False reports, shooting an unarmed man laying on the ground, corruption and co-workers plotting against each other. While we do not know if the proecutor will do anything with the new evidence, hopefully the new police chief will be able to “clean house” and whip them into a respectable group that actually serves and protects the public.
(Article By Jeremiah Jones)