Trial of police officer accused of shooting a black man in the back despite him having his hands up begins
The trial against former Mesquite officer Derick Wiley for the shooting of a Dallas-area black man who was mistaken for a thief as he was entering his own truck is now underway. Prosecutor Bryan Mitchell informed the jurors that the cop fired at his client, Lyndo Jones, even after he had his hands in the air and was begging not to be shot.
According to CBS News, following the incident on November 8, Wiley was subsequently charged with aggravated assault and fired from the police department over use-of-force violations. Jones had filed a lawsuit against the cop in January claiming that his recovery had been "fraught with multiple returns to the emergency room."
The court heard that Jones was struck in the back as he backed away. The authorities claimed Jones was shot after Wiley responded to a report of someone breaking into a vehicle and setting off its alarm.
A 911 caller had claimed that a man who was trying to enter the truck was acting erratically, resulting in Wiley being sent to the scene.
In the body cam footage of the incident, Wiley can be heard ordering Jones out of the car, "Put your hands up, or I'll f***ing shoot you." He's seen pointing the gun at Jones yelling at him to get out of the truck and onto the ground on multiple occasions.
Jones complies and gets on the ground with his protests drowned out by Wiley's louder commands. Having put his hands on the top of his head, Wiley then walks over to him yelling, "Stay on the ground before I f***ing shoot you."
Jones says, "Yes sir, Yes sir. I'm on the ground, man." At this point, Wiley tries to handcuff Jones and places his foot on his neck, resulting in the latter yelping in pain. He gets up from the ground and turns away, but immediately raises his hands and begs the cop to not shoot at him.
But Wiley then fires multiple rounds, with one striking Jones in the back. During the hearing, Jones' attorney said that Wiley placing his foot on his client's neck caused the latter to get back on his feet.
Wiley's lawyer defended the cop and said that he was forced to make a split-second decision after being led to believe from the 911 report that Jones was trying to steal the truck.
A video of the officer talking to investigators was played for the jury and showed Wiley claiming he thought Jones was armed. "I thought he was going to kill me," Wiley said.
However, the authorities found that Jones did not have a weapon on him with the ongoing trial set to continue through the rest of the week. District Attorney Faith Johnson said that her office will seek "the maximum sentence," which for aggravated assault could spell a prison term of anywhere between five years to life, as well as a $10,000 fine.
Watch the body cam footage from the shooting of Lyndo Jones below.