Attorney Lee Merritt Friday called for the firing of a five-year veteran with the Arlington Police Department, who shot and killed 24-year-old O'Shae Terry during a traffic stop Saturday.
"I think there's no question about it," said Merritt said at a press conference Friday. "This was an unjustified shooting."
Arlington police body-camera video, released Thursday evening, shows the moments leading up to the shooting. Police say Terry had been pulled over for expired tags when officers smelled marijuana.
The video shows the backup officer talking to Terry and his passenger while the responding officer runs Terry's information. Then, video shows Terry rolling up his windows. The officer yells for him to stop, reaches into the car from the window and jumps onto the SUV's running boards. As the car starts to drive away, the officer fires multiple times at Terry, who later died at a hospital.
Merritt says there's no reason any of that should have happened.
"A supervisor would've asked 'What are you pursuing them for?,'" Merrit said. "And they would've said 'An expired registration. We think we smell weed,' and they would tell them 'back off, you have their ID, you can go get them at another time.' It's not worth the risk to the public."
"I feel that his life has been taken for no reason," said Sherley Woods, Terry's mother, who said she wants justice for her son.
Arlington police say there are administrative and criminal investigations ongoing into the incident, and say the officer was in fear for his life. Police say they found marijuana, ecstasy pills and a handgun with an extended magazine clip in the SUV.
There's been no determination yet by APD as to whether the shooting was justified.
While Merritt calls Terry's decision to drive away "terrible," he says it should've been for a jury to decide.
"A law enforcement officer cant be judge, jury and executioner on the side of the road," he said.
There's no concrete time table on when we could hear about either investigation.