Body camera video shows officer shoot man committing murder

Newly-released body camera video shows the intense moments leading up to an officer involved shooting on Lynwood Street on December 2017.

In it, the officer, who responded to a stabbing call, shot 52-year-old Aubrey Garrett after he refused to stop attacking the victim.

The officer can be heard saying, "Put the knife down, dude.” The suspect responds, “No,” and stabs the victim.

The Austin police officer had just seconds to act, and ultimately fired one shot at the suspect later identified as Garrett.

“This was a very rare moment, when the officer actually came upon the offense as it was being committed and captured part of the stabbings on camera,” said Travis County District Attorney Margaret Moore. 

Garrett eventually pleaded guilty to murdering Andrea Faye Lindsey that morning.

One witness said the stabbing went on for about 30 minutes before police arrived and, even with a police officer just feet away from him, video shows Garrett continued brutally stabbing Lindsey.

“The officer was ordering the defendant to stop and he didn't, and the officer shot once, managed to wound the defendant. He was shot low because he could see there were witnesses in windows behind the defendant and he didn't want to endanger them,” Moore said. 

This was the first officer-involved shooting where body camera video was available on scene, according to Moore.

“I think it was very significant for us, because we had not realized, until that point, how clear and helpful the videotape was going to be,” said Moore. 

President of the Austin Police Association Ken Casaday said that's usually the case.

“The Austin Police Association backs body cameras 100 percent. We did a lot of research into it. It's not only safer for the officers, it's safer for the community, and provides more transparency, but also provides better prosecution,” said Casaday. 
However, Casaday said it's important to know the cameras aren't perfect and each officer's account of what happened should also be considered.

“Angles can be a problem. These cameras also provide much better lighting than what's outside, so you could be in a dark alley, but it will pick up what's going on, but that's not really what the officer is seeing, so we expect problems like that in the future, but there is always, almost always, an explanation,” Casaday said. 

In this case, Moore said the video showed the officer was well within his right to use deadly force. 

Garrett was sentenced to 40 years in prison for first-degree murder.