The Houston Police Department has just released a video of an officer fatally shooting Jalen Randle, a Black man moments after he was pulled over for multiple warrants. The video shows the cop’s split-second decision to shoot, a fatal action that Ben Crump says was carried out too quickly.
Human rights attorney Ben Crump shared 27-second bodycam footage of Jalen Javon Randle’s April 27 police-involved killing on Twitter on Tuesday, May 24. He claims that the officer, Shane Privette, used his handgun before Randle could have a chance to obey a command.
He claims, and the video supports him, that the demand for compliance was made while Privette was discharging his pistol, and he describes the footage as “heartbreaking.”
“While this is devastating for Jalen Randle’s family, this footage gives us a clearer picture of what happened to Jalen in his final moments,” he says in a press release.
Assistant Chief Hardin stated that his office is sharing this crucial incident briefing ahead of a concluded investigation to share with the public, evidence connecting to the incident where Randle’s life was taken by a police officer in the footage provided by the Houston Police Department.
“The purpose of this critical incident briefing is to give you information concerning an officer-involved shooting that occurred in Houston on April 27th, 2022,” he explained.
He told the public that his department will conduct a thorough investigation into the officer involved in the incident, claiming that this is standard procedure.
“These typically require investigators to interview multiple witnesses, view numerous hours of video footage, and analyze a significant amount of forensic evidence,” Hardin said before warning the public that officials are “in the very early stages of the investigation” and warning viewers of the “graphic” nature of the shooting while admitting it will be “difficult” to watch the shooting.
On the day of the murder, Jalen Randle was wanted by police because he was wanted on three felony warrants. Cops on assignment noticed Randle enter the passenger side of a silver vehicle around 2:45 p.m. When the SUV pulled over, the officers pursued it, flashing their lights and sirens to get it to stop.
However, the driver did not, and he was eventually arrested for his role in the tragedy. Officers used a “pursuit intervention technique” to stop the vehicle, and Jalen Randle rushed out, holding a zipped bag in one hand, ready to flee. According to the video, he was shot before he could flee.
Police say they saw him reach into the car and told him to show his hands before shooting him. However, the video contradicts that aspect of the official police report. In a Facebook post, Ben Crump claims authorities shot him without “giving Jalen NO time to comply before killing him!” He was then HANDCUFFED, searched, and dragged across the ground by police to administer aid.”
According to Hardin, officers discovered a gun in the bag that Randle slipped from his grip after being fatally shot by Privette during the search. According to the video, the officer never lowered his rifle as he approached Randle on the ground. Other officers continue to talk about Randle as if he’s on the move, claiming that they’re apprehending him right now.
Officers are told to “drag” him while he is restrained and unresponsive. They squeeze Jalen and seat him in his own blood as they drag him across the grass and concrete. Nobody asks, “Where was he hit?” until 45 seconds into the video when one cop is directed to get his medical kit out.
“The brutality depicted in this video is highly shocking,” Crump said, “from the officer firing a deadly shot while apparently ordering Jalen to put his hands up to the manner they tied and dragged his lifeless body across the ground. This officer must be held accountable as soon as possible.”
This isn’t the first time this cop has been condemned for using excessive or cruel force while on duty. Privette was indicted by a grand jury in 2019 for reportedly kneeing a narcotics suspect in the face, according to KTRK. The charges against him were later dropped.
Jalen Randle’s death is being investigated by Houston’s Special Investigations Unit, Internal Affairs Division, and the Harris County District Attorney’s Office.