Last week, Lyndo Jones, 31, was shot by a Mesquite County, Texas police officer while he was sitting in his own car.
The alarm on his truck went off due to a malfunction caused by a previous accident and he was trying to fix it when officers arrived on the scene, responding to what they thought was a burglary. According CBS 11 News, things escalated quickly after the officer arrived.
At a news conference Tuesday, Police Lt. Brian Parrish identified Derick Wiley as the officer who shot Jones. He said Jones didn't give the officer enough time to begin an investigation before he attempted to flee and a struggle ensued.
“He was detained because we had received information that there was burglary in progress and regardless of who owns the vehicle regardless of the actual situation, if an officer receives a call that there’s a burglary in progress and arrives at the scene and finds what he deems to be suspect it is simply a prudent matter to take that person into custody and further investigate and find out if the person is up to no good," he said.
Wiley shot Jones twice, once in the back and once in the stomach. According to the police report, Jones continued to fight with officers even after he was wounded and placed into handcuffs.
Two more officers were called to the scene to help subdue Jones until paramedics arrived.
Jones was taken to the Baylor Medical Center in Dallas where he spent six days in the Intensive Care Unit, handcuffed to his hospital bed.
While he was in the hospital, his family was denied visitation and his attorneys Justin Moore and Lee Merrit posted a video on Facebook accusing the police department of violating Jones' constitutional rights to counsel.
“I’ve not seen any clearer case of constitutional violations. Not only do you have the excessive force where the client was shot, unarmed in his own car, accused of being a burglary suspect and the media misled that this man was shot during a burglary, he was then detained in the hospital, his family was denied access to him, they were not given, as he was fighting for his life, any updates on his medical condition. His doctors said they were not allowed to give updates,” said Lee Merritt
Jones was detained for nearly a week before the police filed any charges against him.
After he was released from the hospital on Tuesday, they charged him with evading arrest and booked him without parole.
However, the charges were dropped just a few hours later and Jones was set free.
Police said Jones did not request an attorney while he was being detained or under interrogation.
Moore says that after he went to the hospital Tuesday morning to talk to his client, police removed him from the building.
“However, upon arrival Mr. Jones was being unlawfully questioned by Mesquite PD detectives who disregarded his constitutional right to have counsel present,” he wrote. "I was denied access to visit my client this morning at Baylor hospital. He was shot while being unarmed by Mesquite PD and in the process they tried to sodomize him after he was shot. Now Mesquite PD and the Dallas County Sheriff’s department are violating my clients due process rights by coercing testimony from him and not allowing me to end the interview. In the process, I attempted to end the interview and go speak with my client, and I was subsequently escorted off Baylor’s premises with a criminal trespass warning.”
Lt. Parrish confirmed that the shooting was captured on body and dashboard cameras. He said the footage was being reviewed by investigators and would be released at a later date. He told reporters that he has watched some of the video, but would not elaborate on what he saw.
“I haven’t seen all the footage and I don’t know exactly what’s in all the footage and until I do, I’m not going to relay that information," he said. "I’m not going to try this case in the public media. I’m just simply not going to do that. Right now there are pieces of this investigation that are still under investigation and when we have all the information that’s when I will be releasing it.”
Jones' lawyers say they want the footage released to their office as soon as possible so that they can prepare a civil suit against the city.
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