James Brennand: Ex-cop tried to pull over Erik Cantu the night before he shot teen multiple times

According to a female friend who was with Cantu when he was shot, he ‘sped off' after a cop tried to pull him over the night before the incident

James Brennand: Ex-cop tried to pull over Erik Cantu the night before he shot teen multiple times
James Brennand (L) had approached Erik Cantu (R) a night before shooting the teenager at a McDonald's parking lot in San Antonio, Texas (San Antonio PD, Erik Cantu/Facebook)
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SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS: On October 2, rookie cop James Brennand shot Erik Cantu while he was eating fast food in his car with a female companion in Texas. According to police documents, the San Antonio police officer who fatally shot an unarmed juvenile boy at a McDonald's the previous night had attempted to pull the boy over.

The now-ex-police officer was detained on two counts of aggravated assault on October 11 while working as a public servant but the following day, he was released after posting a $200,000 bond. It happens after Daily Mail reported that Brennand, 25, handcuffed the critically injured adolescent as he was struggling for breath. After enduring multiple surgeries, Cantu, 17, is still in the hospital in a critical state while his loved ones pray for his speedy recovery. According to updated police investigations, Brennand met Cantu the night before the horrific event while traveling in the same maroon BMW he would use the following evening. Authorities, however, have declined to say why Brennand approached the adolescent.

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According to Cantu's female friend who was in the car with him during the incident, "Erik may have just not wanted to deal with the cops." She told KSAT that the teenager disregarded the "emergency lights" and "sped off" when the officer approached the maroon BMW.

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Eric Cantu was shot multiple times by James Brennand of the San Antonio Police Department at a McDonald’s parking lot (Photo credit screenshot San Antonio Police Department / YouTube)
Erik Cantu was shot multiple times by James Brennand of the San Antonio Police Department at a McDonald’s parking lot (San Antonio Police Department / YouTube)

On October 1, at about 8.45 pm, Brennand drew up behind Cantu and turned on his emergency lights before the vehicle accelerated and veered to the left. While the police refrained from giving chase, he did observe that the vehicle's license plates appeared on another vehicle. According to KSAT, James Kopps, the San Antonio assistant city attorney, tried to keep the public records under seal. When Cantu tried to put his car in reverse, Brennand insisted that he get out because he thought it might have been stolen. However, Brennand was stopped by the door, and he quickly fired five shots into the vehicle's driver's side, hitting Cantu.

Cantu persisted in attempting to flee in his vehicle but Brennand kept firing. In all, ten shots were fired and five of them struck the youngster in the liver, diaphragm, bicep, chest, and stomach. Cantu was shot while being arrested by Brennand as he was gravely hurt in the graphic body-worn video of the incident. On October 4, Brennand, a probationary officer with seven months' worth of experience was sacked from his position. Even if he is cleared of the charges, he won't be allowed to return to the police force. He is subject to a court hearing on November 23.

So that Cantu's family could be by his side as he recovers in the hospital, the prosecution dropped all criminal charges against him. Cantu's parents insisted that Brennand be charged with attempted murder during a press conference earlier this month, alleging that the incident was “racist.” His parents thanked God for "all his miracles" in an update on his GoFundMe page. The teenager has now spent 31 days in the hospital in a severe condition, they continued, and they "lost count" of the number of surgeries he underwent.

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