Clint Peterson Was Killed by Police While Running Away

Why did a Duncanville police officer shoot Clint Peterson? Don't bother asking the cops.

The whole confrontation happened quickly. "They weren't prepared, they weren't prepared at all," Debra Gallegos says. It was the one on the motorcycle who got the women's attention. "He came with a hot head," she adds.

Shyanna Gallegos, the one closest to the officers, says the motorcycle officer stumbled off his bike with his hand already on his weapon. She says she heard him ask, "Hey can you talk?" but didn't give Peterson a chance to respond. She began running toward them, telling them, "Don't shoot." Her mom and Melissa Peterson were behind her. Peterson, with his hands in his pockets, backed away.

They heard a Taser fired and then saw a Taser prong tangled in the trees. Peterson dodged it, turned and ran around a tree. The officers quickly closed in, and one of them, just a yard away from Peterson, fired at him. The second bullet caused his body to lunge forward onto the driveway.

Debra Gallegos says she stayed on the phone with 911 the whole time. "I said, 'I thought I told you that it was a fake gun, if he even had one,'" Gallegos says.

Shyanna Gallegos got to the scene first, and a moment later, the two other women ran up. Gallegos says she asked the officer why he shot Peterson, and the officer, still holding his gun, was "freaking out," repeating "I don't know," and then "because he ran."

Told about the witnesses' story, Chief Brown says he can't comment on it until all the official investigations into the shooting are finished. "People are going to have their opinions of what took place, and I respect that. They're giving you their account of what occurred," Brown says. "So what I want to do is take the whole puzzle, and make decisions from the whole puzzle, not just pieces of it."

The only investigative document released to the public so far is the preliminary cause of death sheet, which says that Peterson died of a gunshot wound to the head. Brown says he hasn't seen that, though it was obtained by the Observer. "Where he was shot, how many times he was shot, the part of body, I don't have any of that information," Brown says.

The women begged the officers to check on Peterson. "They didn't even check to see if he was dead or alive. They didn't even touch him," his sister says. Shyanna ran around and tried to grab his hand. They say the officer from the motorcycle tugged on her shirt and pulled her away.

What particularly troubles the witnesses is that dozens more police officers showed up in cars just minutes later. If that whole group had come at once, earlier, maybe they could have caught Peterson at the end of the block alive. "They should have been prepared and not sent one officer on that motorcycle and another one in a patrol car. They should have had more substantial resources than what they brought on," Debra Gallegos says. Within 15 minutes, they say, the ambulance came, but Peterson was clearly dead.

Debra Gallegos maintains that the 911 tape will back up her story from the shooting.

"The 911 tape's going to tell it all," she says.

Standing on the driveway where Peterson died, she turns to look back at her house. "That's a close range," she says. "You're an officer, you're trained, and there's two of you, and you couldn't have tackled the guy?"

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11 comments
acpa4u
acpa4u

Duncanville.... what else did you expect?

I lived there for 50 years and the town and the Police Department suck.

aaronsdigitl
aaronsdigitl

However, if it is proved that an officer used more force than was necessary, the officer can be held criminally and civilly liable. In Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 1, 105 S. Ct. 1694, 85 L. Ed. 2d 1 (1985), the Supreme Court ruled that it is a violation of the Fourth Amendment for police officers to use deadly force to stop fleeing felony suspects who are nonviolent and unarmed. The decision, with an opinion written by Justice byron r. white, said, in part, "We conclude that such force may not be used unless it is necessary to prevent the escape and the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others."

http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Deadly+Force

finnmf89
finnmf89

What is the death toll now of Dallas police shootings? In New York, police opened fire at a man blocking traffick and wounded two bystanders; then TAZERED the unarmed 'criminal', who prosecutors are now blaming for the innocent bystanders being shot. Not the police, who opened fire without warning towards an unarmed man rather than tazering him, but the unarmed man.

In east Texas an officer answering a 911 call shot and killed a man pestering his mother in law, and the officer was also injured. The officer is now seeking financial restitution for his injuries from the 911 caller for "not reporting how dangerous the man was". They're suing someone for calling 911 after shooting her son in law dead.

How many dead in Dallas this year alone? Does anyone have the toll? @dallasobserver is there any way you could put together and profiile the officers and victims of police shootings in 2013?

cajunscouse9
cajunscouse9

This is the type of journalism The Observer should produce more of.

tim.lebsack
tim.lebsack

Never call the cops.  They kill first and claim union immunity later.

scottie1620
scottie1620

We live in a Fascist police state where the cops see everybody not wearing a uniform as the enemy. It is time to stop coddling rogue cops and send them to prison for life in the general population so they can learn what it means to be brutalized by others. Cops in Duncanville have lower education and intelligence than cops in other places. It does not take much to light their fuses and make them take actions far beyond what is required of them.


Several years ago I had a confrontation with them after I caught a woman stealing the new license plate off my car because hers was expired and she could not or would not get her own tag renewed. They made no effort to chase her, but instead took me to jail for causing a disturbance. I was released a short time later when it became apparent to some judge that there had been a terrible miscarriage of justice.


These Duncanville cops should face the same end as Clint Petersen - shot in the back of the head at point blank range.

dyoung112060
dyoung112060

@scottie1620  

These are the kind of people hired as police because everyone complains about the Government  SPENDING money !


to put it in a way that every one will get the point from


" YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR"


As long as folks allow the Local businesses complain about taxes this will continue forever !

In other words, This Is The Cost Of Being CHEAP !


The Cost of Conservatism is VERY High and the ONLY way to change the situation is to VOTE Conservatives OUT at EVERY Opportunity !


Being CHEAP Never makes the World a BETTER Place !

scottie1620
scottie1620

@dyoung112060 @scottie1620 I agree!


Besides, Duncanville cops are so fat that a foot chase for them is measured as the distance between a patrol car and a donut shop. Anything longer than that requires the use of deadly force.

epicmale
epicmale

@dyoung112060 How much of you paycheck do you wish to send to your local PD in order to allow them to hire higher quality personnel?  I know you are generous with other peoples' money, but don't you think you should set the example and step up to the plate with your own money first?

dyoung112060
dyoung112060

@scottie1620 @dyoung112060  

I can't say thats a surprise Scottie.

I have to mention that I don't live in Texas and unfortunately can't really do anything about the situation there.

this is a problem nation wide and it will only get worse because of the  Right Wing Nutz and their cheapskate mentality !


All I can say is that the Tea party Crew is NOT going to Help and most definitely be Careful of the Libertarian Liars Club, they in the most part have become extreme Fascists that are more interested in having the ability to act like local Warlords rather then looking for a democratic solutions to problems, just look to Somalia, that is their VISION of a Libertarian Paradise that they are looking to bring to the Good ole' USA !


I do wish you luck in changing things there, but be careful, these lowlifes will NOT go down without a fight, and the LAST thing they believe in is a FAIR fight.

 
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