CMPD officer cleared in fatal shooting, body cam footage release debated

After CMPD officers were cleared of wrongdoing in the fatal shooting of a man back in March, the family of the victim was in court Thursday asking for a release of the body cam footage.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Two CMPD officers will not face charges for a March shooting that killed a man armed with shotgun that may have been experiencing a mental episode.

District Attorney Andrew Murray released a 175 page report Thursday detailing his offices findings in the death of Iarsalov Mosiiuk.

The release coincided with a previously scheduled hearing where Mosiiuk's family and social action group, Safe Coalition, requested the release of the body camera footage from the two officers involved.

"We would like the full un-redacted copy of the body worn camera," said Lauren Newton, attorney for Mosiiuk's family.

Mosiiuk's sister, Oleysa Tabaka sat behind her attorney in the courtroom. Tabaka has viewed the footage, but said it is important that is released to the public.

"We'd like everyone to keep in mind that at the end of the day this was a mental health call, and if this is the way that mental health calls are handled, people will be afraid to call the police," said Newton.

Tabaka said she called 911 for help after her brother threatened to kill himself and had gotten a hold of her fiance's gun. 

According to the DA's report, Tabaka screamed at responding officers, “please don’t shoot him,” “don’t kill him,” “he’s just being crazy.”

The investigation later determined the gun was loaded, but missing a bolt, rendering it inoperable.

However, Michael Greene, the attorney representing Officer Brian Walsh, says his client had no choice but to fire what would be the fatal shot.

"That gun doesn't have mental health issues, the person may have but he still has a firearm and if the family knew that my question would be why didn't they secure the weapon," he said.

RELATED: Police ID deceased in officer-involved shooting

The DA's report included images from Officer Walsh's body cam. A person can be seen in the distance.  Investigators say it was Mosiiuk with a long gun pointed at Walsh's partner, Officer Michael Dezenzo.

'He sees the deceased in an actual shooting position with the gun pointed towards his partner," said District Attorney Murray.

RELATED: Autopsy from shooting reveals CMPD officer shot man in back

"Him making sure that he neutralized the threat to protect his partner and the civilians and himself. A long gun that size would go through a vehicle quickly," he declared.

The end of the criminal case, cleared the way for the release of the video to both the family and Safe Coalition.  CMPD says it will release the video also.

"It there's no longer a pending investigation we will not object to release," said CMPD attorney Jessica Battle.

Internal investigations are still pending. CMPD has not said if either responding officer received crisis intervention training to address mental health calls.

However, Officer Dezenso's attorney, Daniel Roberts says his client, a 16-year veteran with CMPD is looking forward to continuing his career with the department. Roberts also says the video will show that Officer Walsh saved his client's life.

"Mike Dezenso was very eager for the video being released so it could be shown what Officer Walsh did for him," he said.

However,  Mosiiuk's family says a call for help, didn't have to end like this.

"Why this was  handled the way it was when it was a mental health call to begin with," Newton declared.

Mecklenburg County DA decision on CMPD officer-involved shooting by Hank Lee on Scribd

Mobile users: Click here to read District Attorney's full decision

© 2017 WCNC.COM


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment