Body camera footage of officer involved shooting released
The body camera for September's officer involved shooting has been released by the Jackson County District Attorney.
On September 19th Matthew Graves was fatally shot by Officer Daniel Cardenas in the bathroom of the Eagle Point Carls Jr.
During this week's Grand Jury proceedings, that officer testified that the back up Officer CJ Davis alerted him to what he thought was graves holding a firearm, but that actually turned out to be a taser.
Officer Cardenas fired two shots, killing Graves. Five of the seven jurors concluded that the officer's actions did not violate the law. The Eagle Point Police Department conducted an internal investigation into the shooting and found no wrongful action on the part of the officers involved.
News 10 spoke to one scholar to understand the benefits and limitations to body camera footage. Southern Oregon University criminal justice professor Tiffany Morey says that even with body camera video, what the public sees afterward may be different than what the officer feels in the moment.
"When it goes to grand jury to see if it was a justified shooting, it is what that officer was experiencing at that time. What did the officer see? What did the officer feel? Did the officer feel that their life, or possibly one of the citizens that they're protecting's life was at jeopardy," says Morey.
She says that body cameras can shed meaningful light on an incident and should be used, but they also only capture one action at one angle, and can't always convey what the officer perceives in the moment.
A use of force expert that testified echoed that notion, saying that the adrenaline can impact an officer's ability to process information, and it is reasonable that in the moment a taser could be mistaken for a gun.
Officers Cardenas and Davis are cleared to go back to work and the case is closed.
The body cam footage was released unedited, however News 10 chose not to show the second half of the video due to graphic nature. The first 4 minutes, 44 seconds of the video play uninterrupted with only the audible swearing bleeped over. The following is the complete transcript of Officer Cardenas' body camera.