MIAMI (CBSMiami) — The firing of a Miami Police Officer who was discharged following the shooting of an unarmed man in Miami has been ruled unjustifiable according to arbitrator who said he should be reinstated.
Miami Police fired Reynaldo Goyos on January 31st 2013 saying his actions were unjustified when he shot and killed Travis McNeil, 28, and injured his cousin Kareem Williams on February 11, 2011.
On Saturday, the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) announced an independent arbitrator selected by the City of Miami and FOP ruled the termination of Goyos to have been improper.
Back in 2012, the the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office said they would not prosecute Goyos because they said the shooting was justified and they could not prove that Goyos was not in fear for his life.
On the night of the shooting, McNeil and Williams were leaving Take One Lounge when a number of officers stopped them.
“Just minutes prior to the shooting , the burgundy Kia (being driven by McNeil, with Williams in the front passenger seat), was observed by undercover police officers driving out of the parking lot of the Take One Lounge at a high rate of speed going through a red light and weaving,” states legal documents.
The officers were targeting local gang members believed to frequent the lounge but conducted a traffic stop when they saw the car speeding through a red light.
During the traffic stop, Goyos approached McNeil’s side of the car where, according to legal documents, he was heard commanding McNeil to “show him his hands…Goyos was further heard to utter “don’t do it.”
Goyos fired his weapon when he saw McNeil reach down for what turned out to be a cell phone. McNeil was not armed.
Goyos argued he was afraid for his life but the department said he violated the “Deadly Force Policy,” saying nor he or any other person present that night was in “imminent danger of death.”
More than three years later, Goyos may be able to resume his position as a detective for the department’s gang unit and receive all lost back pay since his discharge, according to legal documents. All findings regarding the incident may be taken out from his personnel file to the extent allowed by law.
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