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Public Safety

San Diego Attorneys Say Officer-Involved Shooting Appears Unjustified

An officer stands at the scene where a man was shot in the Midway District, April 30, 2015.
10News
An officer stands at the scene where a man was shot in the Midway District, April 30, 2015.

San Diego Attorneys Say Officer-Involved Shooting Appears Unjustified
None of the three attorneys asked to view the video by KPBS and its media partner inewsource said the April 30 shooting of Fridoon Rawshan Nehad by Officer Neal Browder appeared to be justified.

San Diego civil rights attorneys are weighing in on the surveillance video of the deadly police shooting released Tuesday by San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis.

None of the three attorneys asked to view the video by KPBS and its media partner inewsource said the April 30 shooting of Fridoon Rawshan Nehad by Officer Neal Browder appeared to be justified.

Related: District Attorney Releases San Diego Police Shooting Video

Criminal attorney Victor Manuel Torres said he didn’t understand why Browder was so quick to pull the trigger because Nehad wasn’t charging at him. He said Nehad was moving slowly and almost appeared to come to a stop before being shot.

“I’m puzzled. I did not see any threat that would justify the use of deadly force," Torres said. "There’s just no threat there.”

Browder was responding to a 911 call saying that Nehad was threatening people with a knife. It turned out that he was actually holding a pen.

Joseph Dicks, a lawyer with Dicks & Workman Attorneys at Law, said "there was not a single threatening move made by the subject."

"He’s walking down the alley at a very slow pace," he said. "He actually comes to a stop before being shot.”

Dicks said there was no audio on the video, so he can't tell what commands were made by Browder.

Dumanis said in her news conference before releasing the video Tuesday that witnesses on the scene said they believed they heard Browder tell Nehad to drop his knife.

“A man with knife at 10 feet is not to be taken lightly,” Dicks said, but added Browder could have used less lethal force.

Civil rights and police misconduct attorney Jerry Steering said the video did not look good for Browder.

"I don't know why they shot him," he said. "To me, it looks crazy."

The attorneys said even without audio, the video shows Nehad didn’t appear to be a serious danger to the officer or anyone else.

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