A 25-year-old Iranian-American man was killed in November in Fairfax County, Virginia, after he drove away from the U.S. Park Police.
During the chase, the officers try to stop him twice. They can be seen pulling up alongside Ghaisar’s car and drawing their weapons.
On the third attempt, they kill him.
Months after Bijan Ghaisar’s death, the federal government hasn’t offered any reasons behind the unnamed federal law-enforcement officers using excessive force to kill the man.
However, local authorities just recently released the dash cam footage from the Nov. 17 incident and it clearly shows Ghaisar’s death was a result of police brutality. The newly released footage may put pressure on the federal government to charge the cops behind what the family's attorney calls a "senseless" killing.
In the footage, an unidentified cop can be seen jumping out of his vehicle and pointing his gun at Ghaisar’s car.
He fires once after Ghaisar's car slowly moves forward. He fires four more times as his partner comes and stands behind him. They continue shooting until Ghaisar's vehicle abruptly stops after hitting a stop sign.
It was later discovered the U.S. Park Police officers shot Ghaisar in the head four times. The deceased was unarmed and all alone when the incident occurred on the George Washington Memorial Parkway.
He died 10 days later due to brain damage.
The family has been seeking for answers since his death, but the federal government has remained silent. “Not only did we lose Bijan, on top of it [all] but ... we have no information,” Ghaisar’s mother, Kelly, told HuffPost. “The total silence of this case makes us, our whole family, feel even worse, because we have to deal with Bijan’s loss and the way that he was taken.”
As per reports about what happened prior to the shooting, the Park Police officers had pursued Ghaisar’s vehicle because his SUV was involved in a collision on southbound George Washington Memorial Parkway. But it was Ghaisar whose car was reportedly hit by an Uber driver in a Toyota Corolla.
According to the Uber driver, he and his passenger got Ghaisar’s license plate tag and called police because, according to them, his vehicle suddenly stopped in the left lane. They didn’t report any injuries.
Oddly, the Park Police still refuses to release the names of the officers responsible for Ghaisar’s death. They also do not have any videos of their own because the agency doesn’t use body-worn or vehicle-mounted cameras.
But the Fairfax County Police Department Chief Edwin Roessler decided to make the video public after handing it over last month to FBI investigators, who are looking into Ghaisar’s killing.
While Fairfax officers were not involved in Ghaisar’s shooting, they assisted the U.S. Park Police in chasing his car. Roessler said he was releasing the video as a “matter of transparency to all in our community, especially the Ghaisar family.”
The video “shows the senseless killing of a young man at the hands of those charged” with protecting the public, said Roy Austin Jr., an attorney for the family who previously served in the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division before joining former President Barack Obama’s White House.
Thumbnail/Banner Image: Reuters, Mike Stone