Video shows 'ER' star Vanessa Marquez being shot dead by cops after she pulled out a BB gun and yelled 'kill me'
A distressing bodycam footage showed 'ER' star Vanessa Marquez pull out a BB gun during a welfare check at her home before she was shot dead by the police. She also shouted 'kill me' at the police officers.
In the video, Marquez, 49, can be seen sitting in her bedroom surrounded by clutter after the authorities were called by a concerned friend to her South Pasadena home in California in August 2018. After the officers tell her that she is being taken into custody for her own safety, Marquez says, "I'm not going."
She then pulls out a pair of scissors from a handbag followed by a pistol, which was later found to be a BB gun. One of the officers then says, "Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, s**t, she's got a gun. She's got a gun. Gun! Gun! Gun!" The police then back out of the apartment. In the footage, the officers can be heard begging Marquez to drop the gun as they wait at the bottom of the stairs.
Marquez appears on the steps holding the gun and this leads to the officers opening fire. Around twelve rounds were fired at Marquez who was then rushed to hospital where she was pronounced dead from the wounds to the torso. The footage was released after the LA County prosecutors decided not to file charges against South Pasadena Officers Gilberto Carrillo and Christopher Perez, the LA Times reported.
Head Deputy District Attorney Shannon Presby wrote in a memo, "In this incident, the evidence demonstrates that Carrillo and Perez actually and reasonably believed Marquez posed an imminent threat of great bodily injury or death." The police were later able to determine that Marquez had allegedly picked up a realistic-looking BB gun.
The police had arrived one hour before the shooting took place and Marquez had started screaming upon seeing them. She also had a seizure, the investigation found. Medical officers, as well as the police, had spent a considerable amount of time trying to convince her to get medical help before the situation escalated.
Marquez's family has expressed outrage after the bodycam footage was released without informing them.
In a statement issued to The Independent, the family's lawyer said, "Vanessa's family was not informed that video would be published. Vanessa's mother feels it was irresponsible for video to be published without any pre-advisement to her. She is a grieving mother, and the City has never once contacted her to meet with her to explain the circumstances of her daughter's death."
The family has since filed a wrongful death suit against the city of South Pasadena.
Marquez is best known for her role as nurse Wendy Goldman on the NBC drama 'ER'.