Leavenworth police released body cam video of fatal shooting in 2017

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) – Days after a lawsuit was filed in the case of the fatal shooting of a police officer, the Leavenworth Police Department has released body camera video of the incident.

Officer Matthew Harrington had been charged with the fatal shooting of Antonio Garcia in 2017.

WARNING: The video of the fatal shooting is graphic in nature.

The most compelling part of the video was the last 28 seconds leading up to Garcia’s death.

The video shows Harrington approaching Garcia.

“So what happens man?”

The video was recorded on July 11, 2017, the day Matthew Harrington was first called to the Garcia home. In part of the video, the officer is seen approaching the home and talking to a family member. Harrington is told about an altercation.

“All I know is that if he comes back, they’ll probably get in trouble again,” the family member said in the video.

Shortly after, Harrington is seen walking up to Garcia, sitting in an SUV.

“What happens man?” said Harrington.

“Me and my wife disagree,” Garcia said, quickly closing the door for the officer.

Garcia closes the door to Harrington several times. Garcia is also warned by Harrington to put down a knife he has seen holding and leave the car. Garcia does not comply and it ends in a rain of deadly shots.

“I have concluded that it is in the public interest to release the officer-involved shooting videos from former officer Mathew Harrington and Antonio Garcia, Jr.,” said Chief Patrick Kitchens of the Leavenworth Police Department.

“It’s a decision that the city and the boss have made, and I respect the boss,” said Todd Thompson, Leavenworth County Attorney.

Thompson says the release of evidence is never in favor of a case.

“I trust our judicial system, I trust our society, and I trust our citizens, and I trust that through the control process we will be able to find who is being called in the jury selection process,” Thompson said.

Antonio’s widow, Heather Garcia, issued the following statement through her lawyer following the video release.

“Mrs Garcia appreciates that the body cam video from the night her husband was unnecessarily killed is finally being released. However, she remains deeply concerned about the lack of transparency that the police and prosecution have shown during this trial. the public can now see, it’s hard to imagine how anyone could conclude that Officer Harrington’s actions were reasonable, and she remains committed to seeking justice for Antonio, asking for understanding as she and her family continue to try to heal from this tragic loss.

Now that the public wants to see some of the key evidence in the case, Thompson reminded that the case is not over yet.

“It’s a pending case, and Mr. Harrington is still innocent until proven guilty, and he has not been proven in any way,” Thompson said.

The county attorney also said he is reconsidering whether he will seek another lawsuit.

“We just spent a lot of time preparing and having a trial, it’s something we have to take into consideration with what the jury decided.”

Garcia’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit, which the city settled for $ 1 million.

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