‘Police lied’: Video belies Philly cops’ claim in fatal shooting of Eddie Irizarry

"In my view this is a crime against humanity, to be perfectly truthful."

SOURCECommon Dreams
Image Credit: CBS News Hour

Philadelphia’s police commissioner said Wednesday that she intends to fire the officer who fatally shot a man in his car earlier this month—an incident in which new video footage of the killing confirmed that police lied about the circumstances of the deadly encounter.

Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said that Officer Mark Dial will be suspended with intent to terminate in 30 days, citing alleged violations of the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) disciplinary code, including insubordination and conduct unbecoming for failure to cooperate in a departmental investigation into the August 14 shooting of 27-year-old Eddie Irizarry.

Following the incident, PPD Public Affairs Cpl. Jasmine Reilly told reporters that Irizarry stepped out of his Toyota Corolla—which police approached after observing alleged erratic driving—and “lunged at the officers… with a knife.”

However, surveillance video from a camera on a nearby home released Tuesday shows Dial and his partner exiting their cruiser, drawing their guns, and approaching Irizarry’s parked car.

“He’s got a fucking knife,” one of the officers yells in the footage.

Dial then shouts, “I will fucking shoot you” as he runs to the driver’s side door before firing his pistol through the closed window and windshield.

The officers are also heard repeatedly saying, “show me your hands” while aiming their weapons at the vehicle. One of the officers then fires six shots at the car a few seconds later.

Police said Officer Dial fired “multiple times” and that Irizarry was hit “several” times. Irizarry’s family said that he was shot six times, which is consistent with what’s shown in the surveillance video.

The officers subsequently rushed Irizarry to a local hospital, where he died a short time later. Outlaw said that two knives were found in his car, but it is unclear whether he was holding either of them.

Outlaw already acknowledged during an August 16 press conference that “the body-worn camera footage made it very clear what we initially reported was not actually what happened.”

Fraternal Order of Police lawyer Fortunato Perri said in a statement that Dial “has the full support” of the organization “as we continue to review the facts and circumstances surrounding this tragic incident.”

Responding to the new footage, Irizarry’s family attorney, Shaka Johnson, said: “What about what you just saw could ever be confused as, ‘He got out of the car and lunged at police officers?’ That was an out-and-out, flat-out lie.”

“In my view,” Johnson added, “this is a crime against humanity, to be perfectly truthful.”


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