Officer Juan Delacruz shot and killed Turner, a Black woman who was in
emotional distress, police insisted the shooting was justified.
Texas (KTRK) -- A Baytown police officer who last year shot and killed a
woman who was in emotional distress has been indicted.
Harris County District Attorney's Office announced Juan Delacruz was
indicted by a grand jury on a felony charge of aggravated assault by a
public servant in connection to Pamela Turner's killing.
As of Monday afternoon, District Attorney Kim Ogg's office said Delacruz will be given an opportunity to turn himself in.
Turner was killed in May 2019 when Delacruz approached Turner at an apartment complex on Garth Road where they both resided.
to police, at the time, Delacruz made contact with Turner and tried to
arrest her, but she struggled with him, forcing him to use his Taser on
her. As he tried to handcuff her, she grabbed his Taser and used it on
him, police alleged.
Delacruz pulled out his gun and fired at Turner multiple times, killing her.
insisted the shooting was justified, but her death was the subject of
calls against police brutality toward people of color.
Turner's killing was a tragedy; it is important to acknowledge that her
family and the community are in pain," Ogg said. "Every aspect of the
case was independently investigated by the Texas Rangers and our Civil
Rights Division prosecutors. Ultimately, we presented all of the
evidence to a grand jury that determined the Baytown Police officer
should be charged with a crime for his actions when he shot Ms. Turner.
We respect their decision and we will be moving forward with
Neighbors who still reside in the Brixton apartment complex say the charge against Delacruz was long overdue.
"He should have been charged immediately," said one woman who knew Turner well.
police gave their response after Delacruz's indictment, explaining they
turned over the investigation to the Texas Rangers, who then submitted
their findings to the district attorney's office.
"We have faith
and trust in our judicial system, and as we wait for this case to
proceed through the legal process, we ask that our community continue to
be patient and have trust and faith in those processes. We also ask
that our community continue to have faith and trust in the Baytown
Police Department and the dedicated, professional men and women who are
committed to serving all members of our community with integrity,
compassion and professionalism," police said in a statement.
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