WOODS CROSS, Utah (ABC4 News) – Did the Woods Cross Police Officer pulled his gun on a 10-year-old child violate protocol by not turning on his body camera?
“It’s the officer’s position that he did not and the city’s position, based on what they know, that he did not,” answered Heather White.
White is an attorney with Snow Christensen & Martineau hired to represent the city of Woods Cross and the officer involved in the June 6 incident.
The officer’s actions drew criticism after Jerri Hrubes said the police officer pulled his gun on her son, DJ, while he was playing on his grandmother’s front lawn.
White says the officer mistook the child for an adult male suspected of a violent crime.
“Based on the description that he had of the suspect and the behavior of the young man, the timing and the proximity, he thought this young man could very well be the suspect.”
ABC4 News obtained a copy of the police department’s policy detailing when an officer’s body camera should be activated.
“There are several situations that applied here and would have required the officer to activate his body camera,” explained White.
As noted in the policy above, an officer isn’t expected to jeopardize his or her safety in order to activate the camera.
“It’s his position that this was all happening very quickly, he was drawing his firearm for his own safety and it wasn’t expedient at that moment to activate the body camera.”
ABC4’s Brittany Johnson asked the attorney why the officer didn’t have his body camera on if he was searching for “armed and dangerous suspects,” why the Woods Cross Police Department keeps changing its story about what actually happened that day between the officer and DJ, how the officer could have mistaken a child for the suspect, and so much more.
You can listen to the interview and get the answers to those questions in the audio below: