FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Newly released security and body cam video shows the moments that led up to a deadly Broward Sheriff’s deputy-involved shooting in Lauderdale Lakes.
The view from the body camera of a BSO deputy responding to a disturbance Wednesday at a Lauderdale Lakes apartment revealed the specifics of a confrontation that would end in the death of Pedro Pierre, 42.
The video shows the deputy entering the apartment and being confronted by Pierre.
“Don’t point at me, man. Step back,” the deputy said.
“Step back for who?” Pierre responded.
“Step back,” the deputy said.
“For who? For you?” Pierre said.
“What’s his problem,” the deputy asked.
Seconds later, the deputy burst from the apartment with Pierre after him. The fight between the two men spilled into the courtyard. The deputy used a taser to try and subdue Pierre. It didn’t work.
“Back down, man,” the deputy said while retreating. “What is wrong with you? Stand down!”
Then a surveillance video showed Pierre striking the deputy and kicking him as the deputy tried to use a baton to defend himself.
“Settle down!” the deputy shouted. “Tell me what is wrong!”
Pierre grabbed hold of the deputy’s foot and a sort of odd standstill ensued.
“Let me go of my leg, sir,” the deputy demanded.
Seconds later, another deputy arrived to help.
“Get your hands up! Get down,” the second deputy repeated.
That deputy’s body camera showed his encounter as Pierre ignored commands to stop his aggressive behavior. Pierre continued kicking the deputy on the ground and when he let go, he appeared to charge after the other deputy.
That’s when three shots rang out and Pierre fell to the ground in the parking lot at the Sunset Hills condominium.
“Shots fired,” the deputy said on his radio.
Broward Sheriff Scott Israel said Friday that he released the footage to dispel rumors and speculation about the shooting on social media and to give an unvarnished view of what happened. He said the deputy who fired could not allow himself to get into a struggle over his weapon.
“Unarmed assailants take guns away from police officers and they are many police officers in the United States of America who tragically have died at the hands of their own weapons,” Israel said.
Pedro Pierre’s sister, Guilaine Jean, and his entire family is devastated. They say the video does not represent their loved one — a father of five, an entrepreneur and a one-time political candidate in Haiti.
“This is not my brother,” Jean said. “He was not a violent person. He was a good guy.”
Pierre’s daughter, Shania, said her father had a stroke a few years ago and suffered from medical problems ever since.
“I know my dad didn’t mean it,” she told CBS4’s Carey Codd. “He didn’t mean it at all. My dad, he had a mental health issue that nobody knew about and I wish the police knew about it before killing him.”
Pierre’s family wishes that the BSO deputy who shot and killed Pierre had tried other methods to stop him before resorting to the ultimate use of force.
“Why can’t they try another way? They have so many ways!” Jean said through tears.
“They didn’t have to kill him at all,” said his son, Ralph Fenelon. “They had tasers, they had other weapons. They didn’t have to shoot him.”
The family is trying to come to terms with the man they know and his actions on the video. They have many questions about how this incident unfolded, what sparked it and the reactions of the two deputies. They commended the first responding deputy, who used a Taser and a baton and showed restraint in his dealing with Pierre, asking him questions and trying different ways to get him to cease his actions.
As for the second deputy, they fail to understand why he used lethal force within seconds of arriving.
“I know (Pierre) made a mistake but he doesn’t deserve to die like that,” said Enoch Pierre, Pedro Pierre’s brother.