San Bernardino

Surveillance Video Captures San Bernardino Police Fatally Shooting a Man

Surveillance video shows San Bernardino police fatally shooting a 23-year-old man from an unmarked vehicle.

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Seventy two hours after San Bernardino police shot and killed Rob Adams, police released a nearly 6-minute video which includes new body worn camera footage.

Police Chief Darren Goodman narrates through much of the footage, in which he explains one of two officers fired at Adams as he was running away because they feared for their safety and the safety of others.

"The officers exited the vehicle and gave Adams verbal commands but he immediately ran toward two parked vehicles with the gun in his right hand," Goodman said. "Seeing that he had no outlet- they believe he had intended to use the vehicle as cover to shoot at them."

After the officer fires, the camera captures the officer hovering over Adams before he's taken to paramedics.

On Wednesday, just after noon, the family of Robert Adams held a press conference about the shooting and the legal action they plan to take in response. The family was joined by attorneys Ben Crump and Bradley Gage.

Adams' family contends he was not armed, but was holding a cell phone.

"The boy ran," said Audwin D. King, the stepfather. "You seen the video. He hunted him down like a dog."


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San Bernardino police say the officers were conducting surveillance in an unmarked car after reports of a man with a weapon in the parking lot of an illegal gambling business.

Tuesday night, police added, the location has a history of criminal activity, including an armed robbery involving Adams as a suspect.

However, it is not clear whether the officers knew the man seen approaching their unmarked vehicle was Adams before they opened fire.

"My guess is, when those officers pulled up in that unmarked vehicle this individual did not realize that they were the police," said Cheryl Dorsey, a retired LAPD sergeant and use of force expert. "Once they stepped out of the vehicle they were in full uniform. It wasn't like they were plainclothes. So although this young man didn't know who they were when that car rolled up, he understood exactly who they were when they stepped out of that vehicle."

Gage, one of the attorneys representing the family, said that video shows a man who appears to be unarmed holding a cell phone that has been portrayed as a gun running from the police toward an area where there's a high wall that he could not have escaped from.

"There was absolutely no justification for the police to shoot him," Gage said.

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