Phoenix police on Friday identified the two officers who fatally shot a man seated in a parked car, a killing that has sparked protests across the city.
Officers Noel Trevino, 29, and Gregory Wilson, 31, are both on administrative leave following the deadly Fourth of July confrontation with 28-year-old James “Jay” Garcia, Phoenix police Sgt. Mercedes Fortune said in a statement to NBC News.
Earlier this week, police released body camera footage that showed officers appearing to pull a gun out of Garcia’s car. It had been parked in the driveway of a home near 59th Avenue and Indian School Road, and officers were there to investigate a reported assault, authorities said.
That video was only a fraction of footage recorded of the deadly confrontation, Police Chief Jeri Williams said. But he added that the selective release was necessary.
“There was rumor or talk out there that the individual in the car was unarmed,” Williams told NBC affiliate KPNX on Thursday. “We wanted to make sure people out there saw the actual information.”
Bystanders captured cellphone video of officers surrounding Garcia’s car in the Maryvale neighborhood and ordering him to come out before opening fire.
No video made public so far shows what was happening inside the car, which had its windows rolled up, before shots were fired.
Chief Williams has asked the FBI to conduct an independent civil rights investigation into the shooting.
“That’s why I called in the FBI to assist us and run a parallel investigation in the Garcia case,” Williams told KPNX.
“I’ve always said I’m not afraid of an extra set of eyes and the FBI will provide that for us.”
A vigil was held Monday night for Garcia at the home where he was shot, and on Sunday a group of protesters gathered at Phoenix police’s Maryvale precinct to demand that the department release full videos of the incident.
And on Tuesday, about 40 protesters took to the streets of Paradise Valley, an affluent neighborhood where Gov. Doug Ducey lives.
Instances of lethal force by police, particularly when minorities are involved, have come under heightened scrutiny since late May when George Floyd died while in custody of Minneapolis officers. Floyd’s death has sparked protests against police brutality and systemic racism across the world.
Matthew Mulligan contributed.