OPD releases body cam footage of fatal Nov. 2020 officer-involved shooting

(Omaha, NE) -- The Omaha Police department has released the body and dash cam video of the November 2020 officer-involved shooting that left Kenneth Jones dead.

OPD Chief Todd Schmaderer and Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert put a statement out on Thursday about releasing the video:

"Chief Schmaderer, Mayor Stothert and the city attorney's office have worked diligently to facilitate the release of the body-worn camera video in the Kenneth Jones case. It has always been our desire to release it. The video will be released tomorrow. The legal explanation as to why the video is being released at this time will accompany the video release." 

Just after 1:00 Friday afternoon, the video was released to the public. According to Nebraska law, the video was not available publicly until a grand jury could be called to review the case. The grand jury found no wrongdoing on the part of the officers involved.

Body-cam and cruiser videos released Friday show from Officers Faulkner and Martier conducting a traffic stop near 27th and Harrison that would result in the shooting death of Kenneth Jones. Martier’s video goes to black with only audio as it fell off during a physical altercation with Jones.

Seven minutes of video from Faulkner’s bodycam shows nearly the entire encounter, with visuals only being obscured during a few seconds of close contact with Jones. As audio is turned on, one of the officers can be heard saying, “he’s reaching” as they get out of the patrol car.

Faulkner repeatedly shouts to all people in a dark-colored car to “show us your hands!” and kicks the vehicle. Multiple people in the vehicle comply, sticking their hands out the driver’s window and both passenger-side windows, and some saying “open the door!”

“I’ve got my f---ing gun right on your face. Put your hands up, Now!” Martier says to Jones through the window. Seated in the back seat, Jones appears not to comply — no hands are seen in the video.

“Hands up! He’s digging... Hands! Hands! Stop reaching right now!” Faulkner shouts from the passenger side of the vehicle. Officers continue shouting to the man to get his hands up and to unlock the door before Martier is seen shattering the rear-driver’s side window with his flashlight.

“He’s not listening!” Faulkner shouts. “Why aren’t you listening? Open the door!” Martier shouts from the driver’s side of the vehicle as he breaks the window, then pulls the man out of the back seat.

Faulkner’s camera visibility then goes gray for a few seconds as he makes close contact with Jones, but continues to shout at him to make his hands visible. Faulkner is heard shouting, “He’s digging, he’s digging. He’s got a gun! He’s got a gun! He’s got a gun! Gun! Gun! Gun! Reach!”

Shots are fired a few seconds later, at 00:01:37 into the seven-minute video, as Jones stumbles up the curb, his hands still obscured from view, and falls face-down onto the grass and sidewalk. “Shots fired” is called in 00:01:50 into the video. Officers continue shouting for hands to stay up and the remaining vehicle occupants to remain in the car.

At 00:02:55, officers approach the man, turn him over — more shouts of “Gun!” — and begin CPR on him as witnesses scream “You killed him!” “You shot him!” “No reason!” at officers and call them liars. They shout back, repeatedly, “He had a gun!” and point to the sidewalk as they continue performing CPR on Jones. An ambulance arrives at the scene at 00:06:50 as CPR is in progress.

Days after the November encounter, Chief Schmaderer shared more details of the traffic stop and events leading up to the shooting of Jones. The incident sparked protests demanding for OPD to release the videos.

You can see a portion of the video on WOWT 6 News' website here.

(Photo by the Omaha Police Department)

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