DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – There are new details his evening in a story CBS 11 News has been following since they first aired surveillance video of a police shooting Thursday night.
The Dallas Police Department has announced that a disciplinary hearing will be held Thursday at 10 a.m. Police Chief David Brown will finally make a statement about the shooting after the hearing.
Sources tell CBS 11 the internal investigation is complete. Normally, these types of inquiries take weeks, if not months. The rapid fire speed of this one suggests department officials will come down hard on the officer, for what witnesses say was an unprovoked shooting of a mentally ill man.
The surveillance video from a neighboring house shows an officer opening fire on a man standing still. It may have been all the evidence DPD officials needed to complete their investigation of Officer Cardon Spencer.
According to CBS 11 sources, Spencer will be disciplined on Thursday for shooting of Bobby Bennett. The 52-year-old man was off his medication last week and behaving erratically outside his southeast Dallas home when he was shot while standing with his arms by his side.
Criminal defense attorney Pete Schulte has been following the case and believes the officer involved could not only be fired but also face criminal charges.
“I don’t think the Chief has any other choice but to say ‘the use of force policy was violated.’ In this particular case the officer could very well find himself facing an Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon charge,” Schulte speculated.
A neighbor’s security camera recorded the shooting that also raises questions about a police report that says Bennett lunged at officers with a knife.
Attorneys for Officer Spencer say he did not write that report. The family of Bobby Bennett believes the officers who did write it deserve discipline along with the officer who pulled the trigger.
Attorneys for Officer Spencer said that despite what the video looks like — there is another side to the story and they are hoping to get a chance to present it. They also admitted they’re concerned that public sentiment is driving this investigation and influencing department officials.
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