San Antonio officer James Brennand was fired after body camera footage showed he shot and injured 17-year-old Erik Cantu while he was in a vehicle eating a burger in a McDonald’s parking lot.
According to NBC News, the police department announced that Brennand was released after taking Cantu to the hospital with multiple gunshot wounds. As of Friday morning, Cantu’s condition was unknown. Police said Brennand arrived at the Blanco Road fast food restaurant around 10:45pm on Sunday for an unrelated disturbance call.
Capt. Alyssa Campos, the department’s training commander, said:
“As the officer attempted to gather information from witnesses, he noticed a vehicle that had swerved around him the day before when the officer attempted to stop because the registered license plate did not match the actual vehicle.”
She further explained that the vehicle Cantu was driving that night was unrelated to the disturbance call that Brennand had responded to.
Brennand reportedly believed the car Cantu was driving was stolen and called in backup. However, he approached the vehicle before his reinforcements arrived. In the body cam footage, Brennand can be seen opening the driver’s door while Cantu is eating a burger. He then ordered Cantu to get out of the car. As the car goes into reverse, Brennand fires several rounds into the car as it pulls away.
VIDEO: Body-cam video shows San Antonio Police Officer James Brennand firing multiple shots at the 17-year-old suspect, who drove away while being called out of the vehicle in the parking lot of a North Side McDonald’s Sunday night get off.
DETAILS: https://t.co/wnVVpFK4pt pic.twitter.com/51NHIHc1mC
— News 4 San Antonio (@News4SA) October 5, 2022
NBC News reports that a 17-year-old passenger was in the car with Cantu. The car was found a block from the scene and the passenger sustained no injuries.
According to CNN, Cantu was charged with evading detention in a vehicle and assaulting the officer, as the officer claimed he was hit by the same door he forcibly opened before Cantu put it in reverse. However, Cantu defense attorney Brian Powers shared that the Bexar County Attorney’s Office announced on Friday that prosecutors would not be filing charges against Cantu.
Brennand was still on his probationary period, which is required for officers who graduated from the police academy less than a year ago. He had been in the service for seven months prior to his resignation. It has not been announced if he will be charged with a crime.
This incident is still under investigation.
TSR STAFF: Jade Ashley @Jade_Ashley94