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December 1, 2021 / 11:47 AM / CBS News
A Tuscon police officer has been fired after fatally shooting a man sitting in a mobility scooter, officials announced.
Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus condemned the shooting in a news conference Tuesday after body camera video and surveillance footage showed former police officer Ryan Remington shooting 61-year-old Richard Lee Richards nine times after Richards was suspected of shoplifting from a Walmart.
“His use of deadly force in this incident is a clear violation of department policy and directly contradicts multiple aspects of our use of force and training,” said Magnus.
Surveillance footage from the Walmart showed Remington and an employee slowly trailing Richards through a parking lot while Richards is in a mobility scooter. Police said an employee told Remington, who was off-duty and working security at the store, that Richards stole a toolbox.
Remington asked Richards for a receipt but Richards brandished a knife and continued toward another store, according to Magnus.
According to the Walmart employee, Richards said, “If you want me to put down the knife, you’re going to have to shoot me,” Magnus said.
Another officer arrived as Richards made his way toward the entrance of a Lowe’s Hardware Store. In one of the videos, Remington is heard asking Richards to stop.
When Richards refused to stop, Remington opened fire, with nine rounds hitting Richards before he fell to the ground.
Surveillance video shows Remington using handcuffs on Richards right after the shooting.
“Officers rendered medical care, but a short time later Mr. Richards was declared dead,” the police chief said.
Attorney Mike Storie, who is representing Remington, told CBS News that the videos only shows parts of what happened.
“These were cut and pasted videos that show about 20% of what actually happened last night,” Storie said.
He added that his client’s close proximity to Richards did not allow the officer to safely deploy his taser. In a statement released Tuesday, Tucson Mayor Regina Romero called the shooting “unconscionable and indefensible.” The case is now under investigation by the Pima County Attorney’s Office.
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First published on December 1, 2021 / 11:47 AM
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