SDPD Identifies Man Shot By Officers, Releases Bodycam Video
The San Diego Police Department has identified 25-year-old city resident Leonardo Hurtado Ibarra as the man shot by officers downtown on Saturday. As of Sunday afternoon, Ibarra was in the intensive care unit of a local hospital with life threatening injuries, according to a SDPD news release.
Also, the department released bodycam and streetlight video of the shooting on Sunday afternoon. The video and news release provided additional details on the circumstances surrounding the shooting, which happened just before 6 p.m. Saturday in the vicinity of 6th Avenue and B Street.
Two uniformed officers noticed Ibarra exiting a building and recognized him from a recent wanted flier on a robbery because of distinctive tattoos on his face, the news release said. When they attempted to contact Ibarra, he drew a firearm and pointed it at one of the officers, prompting them to fire their weapons, the news release said.
(Below is the bodycam and streetlight video released Sunday by the San Diego Police Department. Warning: The video contains graphic images.)
Ibarra was hit with at least one bullet and fell to the ground, the news release said. The officers handcuffed him and immediately began administering first aid, the news release said. He was taken to a local hospital where he underwent surgery.
The department did not release the names of the two officers and said no other officers were involved. Investigators from the SDPD’s homicide unit were called to the scene, the news release said.
Based on witness interviews and surveillance footage, when the officers attempted to contact Ibarra, he refused to cooperate with their directions and walked away, the release said. As he was walking, Ibarra dropped the items he was carrying in his hands and began reaching towards his waistband, the news release said.
As the officers were following Ibarra, they split up with one officer in the street and one on the sidewalk. He suddenly pulled an item from his waistband and turned towards the officer in the street and pointed the object directly at that officer, the news release said. Both officers fired their weapons.
The item Ibarra allegedly pointed at the officers appears to be a loaded revolver wrapped in a bandanna which was located under his body as he was handcuffed, the news release said. It is not known at this time if the man fired at the officers.
Shortly after the shooting, more than a hundred protesters gathered at the corner of A Street and Sixth Avenue, many of them calling for accountability and transparency about the shooting. Dozens of protesters returned to the scene on Sunday.
Activists, including San Diegans for Justice, are demanding release of footage from the officer’s body cams.
"San Diegans for Justice is requesting SDPD release body-cam footage immediately, give the public a timeline for the internal investigation of the incident, and make all aspects of the investigation public as soon as it is completed,'' the group said.
The SDPD tweeted: "We understand transparency is important. We are working tirelessly to gather all video evidence including body-worn camera footage so that it can be released without delay.''
In an interview with KPBS on Saturday, community activist and former mayoral candidate Tasha Williamson said the SDPD has to show they are committed to transparency in order to gain the public's trust.
"Let us see exactly what happened, let us make sure that officers did exactly what we’re being told they are to do when they come into our communities looking for somebody who 'fits the description,'" Williamson said.
When the homicide unit completes their investigation, it will be reviewed by the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office to determine if the officers bear any criminal liability for their actions, the SDPD news release said.
The news release went on to say that reviews will also be conducted by the department’s internal affairs unit, its shooting review board and the city’s Community Review Board on Police Practices. The FBI and the United States Attorney’s Office will also be monitoring the investigation, the news release said.
City News Service contributed to this report.