The New York Police Department released footage of last week's police-involved fatal shooting of a Bronx man holding a knife and a fake gun — the first to be made public under the city's pilot body camera program.
Officers responded to Miguel Richards' apartment on Sept. 6 after his landlord called on police to perform a wellness check, according to the New York Daily News. When officers arrived, video shows they encountered Richards standing in the corner of his bedroom, wearing a polo shirt and sunglasses, holding a knife in his left hand. His right hand was behind his back.
The officers on the video can be heard repeatedly ordering Richards to drop the knife. In total, officers asked Richards to drop the knife 44 times.
"I don't want to shoot you, but I will if you don't drop that knife," the officer says at one point on the video.
The police department released seven videos showing the standoff from the perspective of four officers. They also released a 17-minute compilation of all the videos.
Another man the police identified as Richards' friend can be heard on the video begging Richards to drop the knife. "Put your hands up, dude, it's not a joke."
Richards can be seen on the video standing expressionless in the corner of the bedroom. He does not say anything during the entire standoff and he does not comply with the officers' orders.
At one point one of the officers notices Richards is holding a gun in his right hand and asks him if it is real and to drop it.
"I don't want to shoot you if you have a fake gun in your hand, but I will shoot you if that's a real gun," one officer is heard saying.
Richards appears to raise his hand and the gun — which turned out to be fake — and then one officer fired his stun gun and the other two officers opened fire, killing Richards.
The NYPD began equipping officers with bodycams in April. By the end of the year, 1,200 officers will be wearing body cameras, Police Commissioner James O'Neill said at a press conference Tuesday.
Mary Ann Georgantopoulos is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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