Hearing held to discuss release of body cam footage

A hearing was held concerning a body-camera video from an officer involved shooting incident. The widow of the man killed by police wants that video released immediately.

- A hearing was held concerning a body-camera video from an officer involved shooting incident. The widow of the man killed by police wants that video released immediately.

The 18-minute video clip shows what led up to former Mesa Police Officer Philip Brailsford shooting and killing Daniel Shaver. That video has been sealed and now a judge is deciding whether to unseal that evidence.

Shaver was shot five times as he was on the ground crawling towards police in the hallway of his Mesa hotel. Brailsford was issued a body camera, and the whole incident was caught on tape.

"The public is the one who pays for the body cameras, the whole idea for the body cameras is so the public can see what happens with the police force," said Mark Geragos.

Laney Sweet, who is Shaver's widow, attended Wednesday's hearing just days after giving birth. She wants to see for herself, what happened to her husband.

"We're hopeful that this shroud of secrecy that has enveloped this case so far will be lifted," said Geragos.

Judge Sam Myers will decide whether the video will be released before or after the trial. Brailsford has been charged with second-degree murder; he was recently fired from the Mesa Police Department.

"He's doing as well as you might expect for somebody who went through the traumatic experience of having to kill someone in the line of duty and having his chief not stand behind him and fire him," said Craig Mehrens.

Both Brailsford and the state say releasing the body camera footage could taint the jury pool, and may stand in the way of him getting a fair trial. The state offered Brailsford a plea deal, but he turned it down.

"Because he's innocent because he did what he should have done, acting in the line of duty," said Mehrens.

The judge has yet to make a decision on the matter. If the judge does agree that the body camera video should be released to the public, the court must also decide if any parts should be redacted first.

Another hearing is scheduled for May 16.


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