Spokane police released body camera, cellphone and surveillance video showing the Nov. 7 shooting of carjacking suspect Tyler J. Randant, 22.
Body camera video from Officer Cory Lyons shows a tense encounter as Lyons gets out of his car and finds Randant, 22, standing in the middle of Division Street holding a knife to his throat. Lyons and other officers yell “Drop the knife,” but Randant turns and runs into a nearby Zip Trip parking lot.
Lyons chases Randant as he approaches the side of a green SUV while Officer Holt Widhalm approaches from the other side. Cellphone video shot from witnesses in another car shows Randant trying to open the SUV’s door. In his report, Widhalm wrote he could see a boy in the passenger seat with a “petrified look” on his face and feared Randant was trying to get in the car to steal it or assault the woman and boy inside.
Lyons’ video shows him arriving at the SUV and yelling again for Randant to drop the knife and get on the ground. Seconds later, he fires two shots as Widhalm fires once, hitting Randant in the chest and leg. Randant collapses to the ground, bleeding, and lets go of the folding knife a second later. The entire encounter takes less than a minute. After the shooting, officers start first aid and apply bandages to Randant’s wounds.
Capt. Eric Olsen said at a news conference that the cellphone and surveillance video of the shooting demonstrates the limited scope of a chest-mounted camera.
“There is a great deal of information that is not captured by the body-worn cameras,” he said. From the wider angle of a witness’ cellphone, it’s easier to see that Randant appears to grab for the SUV’s door handle.
Police reports released Wednesday say 21 people called 911 to report a man standing in the street stopping traffic, and many said he was armed with a knife. Randant faces nine felony assault and attempted robbery charges in connection with the incident. He was released from the hospital and booked into jail Dec. 16, the same day Spokane County Sheriff’s Office investigators forwarded the case file to the county prosecutor.
The video release of the encounter was the second time the department has shown footage of an officer-involved shooting to media before the county prosecutor has decided whether to criminally charge the officers involved. That change in policy was announced last month. Previously, police released video to individuals who filed public records requests after months of waiting while a case was being investigated.
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