5 Police Officers Face Life In Prison After Shooting a 15-Year-Old Boy 13 Times – He Reportedly Attempted to Rob a Gas Station

All five policemen are facing first-degree manslaughter charges

After shooting a 15-year-old boy who was allegedly trying to rob an Oklahoma gas station, five Oklahoma City police officers are facing first-degree manslaughter charges.

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On Nov. 23, they got a call for an attempted armed robbery at an area convenience store.

They encountered the suspect, 15-year-old Stavian Rodriguez, when they arrived on the spot.

However, the video of the encounter shows that the boy, who was armed when the police arrived, put the weapon on the ground and seemed to be prepared to cooperate with the policemen.

The cops can be heard:

“Show us your hands, sir. Nobody has to get hurt.”

The teen can be seen lifting his shirt to show officers that he has a gun tucked in the waistband of his jeans. He places the gun on the ground, and one policeman says:

“Get face-down on the ground!”

The boy then appears to attempt a reach into his pocket in a motion that appears to be the act of removing something else.

Just seconds later, he was shot at least 13 times, and ended up dead.

Immediately after the fatal shooting, the officers were placed on administrative leave.

In the charging documents, District Attorney David Prater claimed that the five officers “acted jointly, willfully, unlawfully and unnecessarily killed Stavian Rodriguez.”

A probable cause affidavit states that the officers unnecessarily shot the teen after they were “simultaneously giving him varying commands.”

The affidavit also adds that the 15-year-old was not armed beyond the weapon he’d laid down on the ground at the officers’ commands.

It noted:

“Stavian Rodriguez had no weapons on him other than the firearm, which he dropped prior to being shot. A cellphone was recovered from the left rear pocket he had his hand in at the time he was shot.”

If convicted on the first-degree manslaughter charges, the officers, which include Bethany Sears, Brad Pemberton, Corey Adams, Jared Barton, and John Skuta, face life in prison.

The first to fire a “less lethal weapon” was a sixth officer, Sarah Carli, and she is not facing charges.

According to investigators, after being shot with the “less-lethal” round, five officers “unnecessarily fire lethal rounds at Rodriguez, striking him numerous times and inflicting mortal wounds.”

The Oklahoma City police union defended the actions of the five officers. OKC Fraternal Order of Police President John George stated:

“Officers must make life and death decisions in a split second, relying on their training. When an armed robbery suspect did not obey police commands, five officers perceived the same threat and simultaneously fired their weapons. A loss of life is always a tragedy and we know these officers did not take firing their weapons lightly. The OKC FOP stands by these officers and maintains they acted within the law.”

Additionally, a 17-year-old boy is also facing first-degree murder charges related to Rodriguez’s death. He admitted to being involved in the robbery, but happened to not be at the scene when cops fired on Rodriguez.

The alleged accomplice, Wyatt Cheatham, can face felony murder charges in Oklahoma if someone dies while certain felonies are being committed.

The teen is being held without bond in the Oklahoma County Jail.

Content warning: The video below shows the gunfire that led to the death of Stavian Rodriguez, even though the victim is not shown:

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Source: abcnews.go.com

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