Texas police officer indicted in 2019 shooting of Black woman

Texas police officer indicted in 2019 shooting of Black woman
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A Texas police officer was indicted by a grand jury Monday over the fatal shooting of a Black woman in 2019.

Juan Delacruz was charged with aggravated assault by a public servant over a year after he shot and killed 44-year-old Pamela Turner during an altercation over Delacruz's stun gun last year, USA Today reported.

The two lived in the same complex together about 25 miles east of Houston, and Delacruz was aware that Turner had outstanding warrants based on "prior dealings" he had with her, Lt. Steve Dorris told the press last year.

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Dorris added that Delacruz shot Turner after she shocked him with his own Taser. A bystander took a video of the shooting.

"I'm walking, I'm actually walking to my house," Turner tells Delacruz in the video, which was obtained by news outlets. "You're actually harassing me."

Turner collapses to the ground while Delacruz stands over her and attempts to reach for her arms. She calls out "I'm pregnant," and the officer backs up. The video cuts off while the audio continues recording, and five gunshots follow.

Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg called Turner's death a tragedy.

"It is important to acknowledge that her family and the community are in pain," Ogg said in a statement.

According to court records, Turner had three outstanding misdemeanor warrants at the time.

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Following the indictment, Delacruz will be given a chance to turn himself in and faces up to five years in prison if convicted.

Greg Cagle, an attorney for Delacruz, told the Associated Press he thinks the case against his client is motivated by politics. Delacruz was defending himself when he shot Turner, Cagle said.

"When someone takes a police officer's Taser and then uses it against them, the officer is left with no options other than deadly force. That's how the officers are trained," he said.

Police have also said that Turner was not pregnant despite the warning she gave to Delacruz before the altercation.

A lawyer for Turner's family, Ben Crump, argued that the officer "absolutely knew that Taser could not be fired again without her changing the cartridge," adding that, "he did not have to use deadly force while she was laying on her back."

Crump said Turner had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia last year and declared Delacruz was aware she had a mental illness.

Charges against Delacruz come months after a summer of protests over police brutality and systemic racism.