Trial begins for Austin police officer charged with murder of Mike Ramos
AUSTIN, Texas - The murder trial for APD officer Christopher Taylor began Monday, May 22 with jury selection.
Taylor is charged in the shooting death of 42-year-old Michael Ramos in the parking lot of a southeast Austin apartment complex on Pleasant Valley Road.
It started in April 2020 when Austin police responded to a call about two people doing illegal drugs and producing meth in a car. The caller indicated that the man had a gun, but no weapon was ever found at the scene.
Video shows Ramos lifting his shirt and circling around himself to show that he didn’t have a gun and can be heard saying "I don't got no f***ing guns y'all."
An officer shot Ramos with less lethal rounds while his hands were in the air. Ramos tried to flee in his vehicle and Officer Taylor opened fire, shooting him in the back of the head, and killing him.
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Ramos’ family claims his fourth amendment rights were violated. A judge denied Officer Taylor's motion to dismiss the civil lawsuit against him.
Ramos' family also sued the City of Austin for what they believed to be discriminatory practices by the Austin Police Department.
This is the first of two murder charges for Taylor. He and another officer were indicted in connection to the July 2019 death of Dr. Mauris Desilva.
DeSilva was having a mental health crisis and APD received reports from his neighbors about it.
Police have said DeSilva walked towards them with a knife, although their explanation has been disputed. He was shot and taken to the hospital where he later died.