A 911 caller stuck to his story that he thought the two suspects who robbed his car in Pasadena were armed, a detail that turned out to be false and that police said led to the shooting death of one of the men.
“I was afraid,” said 26-year-old Oscar Carrillo-Gonzalez, who requested his face not be shown television. “I thought they had guns or something or they were going to shoot me.”
Carrillo-Gonzalez described himself as living in fear, adding that his life changed ever since he called Pasadena police after his laptop was stolen from the back of his car last month.
Carrillo-Gomez told police that the teenagers who robbed him were armed – a tactic, authorities said, the 26 year old admitted to using in attempt to get police to respond faster.
That misinformation, police claimed, resulted in a Pasadena police officer fatally shooting 19-year-old Kendrec McDade in the 700 block of Sunset Avenue after a pursuit with two officers – one in a car, the other on foot.
The officer in the car, identified as Jeffery Newlen, fired at the teenager after seeing McDade make a sudden move to the officer, his hand on his waistband, Pasadena police officials said.
Pasadena police claimed Carrillo’s unfounded report that the robbers pulled out what appeared to be silver pistols framed that fatal pursuit.
Carrillo-Gonzalez, a father of two, said he was in shock when he called police.
Police held Carrillo-Gonzalez for six days on suspicion of involuntary manslaughter.
The District Attorney Office’s declined Monday to file those charges. But the arrest tipped off immigration officials, who discovered that Carrillo-Gonzalez was an undocumented immigrant who had been deported to Mexico in 2006.
His deportation is postponed pending the Pasadena investigation, but immigration officials said they plan to deport Carrillo-Gonzalez as soon as that case is complete.
Meanwhile, he is being electronically monitored by an ankle bracelet.
“I feel sorry about what happened. I did not choose to be there,” he said. “I didn’t choose to be in that moment.”
An attorney for the McDade family has filed a federal civil lawsuit against the city of Pasadena.
McDade’s family was outraged over the shooting, which supporters have drawn parallels to the fatal shooting of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.
"When the chief wants to say these were tactical moves ... shooting out of the police car ... Come on man. That's a drive by," said Kevin McDade, Kendrec McDade's uncle. "I would like to see justice served. I would like the police to quit trying to cover up the real situation for political reasons."
Newlen and the other officer, identified as Matthew Griffin, are on paid administrative leave during the investigation.
There were no witnesses to the shooting, and the dash-mounted camera in the police cruiser was not running at the time, police said.