Newly released police dashcam video appears to show a Fort Worth, Texas, officer shooting a black man as he walks away. The man survived the shooting but was left paralyzed, according to his attorney.
Recorded in July but released for the first time this week by the man's lawyer, the video was shot at night, and elements of it are difficult to discern. The encounter involved a Fort Worth officer and a Tarrant County sheriff’s deputy, according to police. They have not been identified.
In the video, David Collie, the man in the video, appears to be turning away from the two approaching officers before he's shot and falls to the ground. Collie's lawyer, Nate Washington, told The Associated Press that Collie posed no threat to the officers, but police said in a statement at the time of the incident that Collie had a box cutter in his hand when he was shot. Washington did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.
The Fort Worth Police Department declined to comment on the dashcam video and instead referred ABC News to the statement given when the incident took place in July.
Authorities were searching for two shirtless black men who they believed had committed a robbery near a gas station prior to the shooting, according to the statement.
"Fort Worth Police Dispatch received a 911 call from a victim in reference to a robbery that occurred in the parking lot of a gas station located at the intersection of Las Vegas Trail and South Normandale Street," the statement reads. "The victim stated that two shirtless black males had met him/her at the location to conduct a purchase of items negotiated in an online transaction. One of the black males displayed, what appeared to the victim, to be a silver handgun and robbed the victim of the items."
Shortly after receiving the initial call, the two officers involved in the incident "observed a subject matching the description of one [of] the robbery suspects look in their direction and duck down behind a row of bushes..." the statement reads. The subject was later identified by police as Collie.
"As the officers approached and exited the patrol car, the subject began walking away from them. The officers gave verbal commands for the subject to stop; however, the subject refused to comply and continued walking away. He was told again by the officers to stop and show the officers his hands, one of which was in his pants pocket," the statement reads.
The statement goes on to say that Collie then attempted to remove "a silver object" from his pants pocket and "pointed it directly at the TCSO deputy," prompting the Fort Worth officer to open fire.
"The Fort Worth officer saw the silver object, believed the male was threatening the TCSO deputy with a firearm and fired two rounds at the subject striking him once in the lower torso," the statement reads.
The silver object turned out to be a box cutter, according to the statement. It is unclear if Collie has a weapon in his hands from the dashcam footage.
The Fort Worth officer involved in the incident was initially placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation but has since returned to duty, Sgt. Marc Povero said in a statement to The AP. Povero declined to discuss the outcome of the investigation.
Collie was charged with aggravated assault on a public servant following the incident, but a grand jury declined to indict him, according to The AP.
The video of Collie's shooting adds pressure to a police department that is currently struggling to get past criticism surrounding a videotaped arrest last week that appeared to show one of its officers wrestling a black woman to the ground before arresting her and her two teenage daughters.
The officer involved in that incident was placed on restricted duty last week.
The Texas ACLU and others have suggested that the video is emblematic of the threats people of color frequently face when dealing with the police.
"This incident and countless others like it demonstrate that for people of color, showing anything less than absolute deference to police officers—regardless of the circumstances—can have unjust and often tragic consequences," the statement said.
On Tuesday, the Fort Worth Police Department issued a statement on Facebook regarding the recent criticism the department has faced.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.