Originally published on February 14, 2015, at NationofChange.org
A witness recorded three police officers chasing and gunning down a mentally disturbed man for throwing rocks at them on Tuesday. Although the Pasco Police Department claims the man struck two of the officers with rocks and withstood the effects of a Taser, an eyewitness and the video do not corroborate their account of the incident.
Around 5pm on Tuesday, Pasco police officers Adrian Alaniz, Ryan Flanagan, and Adam Wright responded to a 911 call concerning a man allegedly throwing rocks at cars and trucks. The officers approached Antonio Zambrano-Montes in the Fiesta Foods parking lot and ordered him to put down the rocks and surrender. According to a police statement, Zambrano-Montes threw rocks of various sizes at them pelting two of the officers with rocks. After a Taser failed to have any effect on him, the officers fired their service weapons to take down Zambrano-Montes.
But Pasco resident Benjamin Patrick, who witnessed the incident, asserts that he saw Zambrano-Montes struggling with an officer when two other officers drove up to help. Zambrano-Montes began yelling at the police when he picked up two rocks or dirt clods. Patrick recalled Zambrano-Montes throwing one at the cops but missing. Then an officer fired his Taser, but Patrick does not believe both darts connected with Zambrano-Montes.
As Zambrano-Montes pulled the ineffective dart from his arm, the officers fired five shots at him. According to Patrick, the officers hit Zambrano-Montes in the first volley of bullets. As Zambrano-Montes fled across the busy intersection, the officers chased after him. When he turned around to confront the officers, they fired at least eight more times shooting Zambrano-Montes to death.