Two Anaheim police officers fired their weapons 76 times during a pursuit last year in which a man armed with an airsoft gun and under the influence of drugs was killed after being struck by at least nine police bullets.
The actions of the officers were described by prosecutors as “alarming and irresponsible” in a report released Wednesday, but the Orange County District Attorney’s Office determined there was insufficient evidence to file charges against them.
Graphic videos from the body cameras worn by both officers were reviewed, and one of the officers, Kevin Pedersen, was fired. The other, Sean Staymates, was disciplined.
The six-minute bodycam footage, also released Wednesday, was described as “disturbing” and “difficult” to watch by city officials.
The dangerous pursuit unfolded July 21, 2018, in a residential part of Anaheim and left Eliuth Penaloza Nava, 50, dead.
How the Shooting Happened
The incident began just after 9:30 a.m. when one of the suspect’s brothers called police and said that Nava had ingested an unknown drug and was “hallucinating,” according to the DA’s report.
Nava, who lived in a detached part of a house belonging to his parents, had a history of drug abuse; family members suspected he was under the influence of some substance that morning because he was behaving erratically, the report stated.
The brother told dispatchers that a “knife and gun” were inside Nava’s truck, a white Chevy S-10 that was parked in front of his parents’ house.