DALLAS – Dallas-area black man mistaken for a thief last year, he tried to unlock his own truck and had his hands in the air and was begging not to be shot as a police officer shot him two times, a prosecutor said Tuesday.
Dallas County prosecutor Bryan Mitchell told jurors in opening statements in the trial of the former Mesquite officer Derick Wiley that Lyndo Jones was struck in the back as Jones backed away.
Wiley, who is also black, and who was subsequently fired from the department for use-of-force violations, is charged with aggravated assault in the Nov. 8 shoot. Jones filed a lawsuit in January that said his recovery is “fraught with multiple returns to emergency rooms.”
The authorities have said Jones was shot after Wiley responded to a report of someone breaking into a vehicle, setting of the alarm clock. A 911 caller reported a man trying to the truck behaves erratically, according to testimony Tuesday, reported KXAS-TV. Body camera video played for jurors showed Wiley to react and ordered Jones to the ground after finding him in the truck. Jones goes to the ground, but finally it is up and appears to start before turning and begged not to be shot.
Jones’ attorney said Wiley placed his foot on Jones’ neck, causing a pain that prompted Jones to get back to his feet.
A lawyer for Wiley said the officer was forced to make a split-second decision after being led to believe that the suspect was burglarizing the truck. Video played for the jury showed Wiley tell the researchers that he thought that Jones was armed. “I thought he was going to kill me,” Wiley said.
Authorities determined that Jones doesn’t have a weapon.
The trial is expected by the week.
The aggravated assault charges carries a prison term of between five years and life in prison, and up to a $10,000 fine. District Attorney, Faith Johnson, said her office “to strive for the maximum” sentence.