AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The family of an Austin, Texas, man is seeking answers after he was fatally shot by police last month on his front porch following a late-night emergency call by a neighbor.
Video and audio released Thursday show that Austin police officers arrived Nov. 15, yelled “drop your gun,” then fired at Rajan Moonesinghe, who was holding an AR-15-style weapon.
Officers were responding to a 911 call requesting police and mental health support because a man was holding a long gun outside in the residential neighborhood. The caller, who was not identified in the recording, said the man had approached him earlier in the day to ask if he had noticed anything suspicious in the area.
When officers arrived, Ring security camera footage released by police shows that Moonesinghe had just fired two shots into his home.
Moments earlier, the security camera footage shows Moonesinghe speaking in the direction of his house while pointing the gun inside, but it is not clear why.
After shooting Moonesinghe, body camera footage released by police shows officers running to the porch and attempting life-saving measures.
Officers checked Moonesinghe’s house and didn’t find anyone inside, police said.
Moonesinghe’s older brother said in a statement that officers “shot first and asked questions later.” Johann Moonesinghe said he asks that city officials and the Travis County District Attorney hold the officer who killed his brother accountable.
“Otherwise, these senseless shootings will continue and more innocent people will be shot and killed by Austin police officers,” Johann Moonesinghe said.
The Moonesinghe brothers founded inKind, an Austin-based business that says it helps restaurants access capital without traditional without investment or loans.
Austin police identified the officer who fired at Moonesinghe as Daniel Sanchez. He has been placed on administrative leave. Sanchez has worked for the department for almost three years.
The incident is under two investigations: a criminal probe by the Austin police Special Investigations Unit in conjunction with the Travis County District Attorney’s Office, and an administrative inquiry conducted by the Austin police Internal Affairs Unit, with oversight from the citizen-led Office of Police Oversight, according to Austin police.
The police department declined to comment further beyond officially released statements.
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