SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – The Salt Lake City Police Department released body camera video of the officer-involved shooting that killed 30 year old Cody Belgard, a local rapper known as “See Smoke”.
Now we are hearing two very different perspectives on what happened on the night of Friday, November 9th: one from the SLCPD and the one from Belgard’s family.
Belgard was wanted on several outstanding warrants when SLCPD officers found him in a Sugar House shopping center parking lot where he slammed his girlfriend’s car into a police car, nearly missing an officer.
Belgard then led officers on a 15 minute pursuit.
“He’s in a car, going about 80 miles an hour,” an officer says over his radio. “Driver’s front door is open, weaving in and out of traffic.”
The chase ended in the 800 block of Sir Philip Drive in Rose Park where Belgard failed to comply when officers repeatedly ordered him to the ground. Moments later four officers fire their Glock 9 mm pistols and one fires a shotgun.
“He’s got a gun,” one officer says on the video.
“He’s pointing..Drop it…put it down,” others can be heard yelling.
“The suspect was transported to an area hospital in critical condition, where he later died from his injuries,” SLCPD Capt. Lance VanDongen said. “At the time SLCPD released the investigation to the protocol team, no gun had been found at the scene or on the suspect.”
Belgard’s older brother Marvin Oliveros and his parents Mike and Penny Belgard were at Wednesday morning’s news conference. Afterward, Oliveros told reporters that Cody was targeted because of a prior incident. He calls it an “execution”.
“The tactic that police use when they know they’re being videotaped, when they know there might be potential witnesses around,” Oliveros said. “And they just throw out things like ‘He has a weapon, he has a gun’. They all said that yet we find no weapon and no gun and those statements are what triggered five officers firing on this young man. A very talented, well loved, nonviolent young man. We understand now that if this could happen to him, this could happen to any of your children, any of your loved ones.”
Oliveros would not say whether the family plans to file a lawsuit against the police department only that they would make sure the officers are held accountable.
The West Valley City Police Department and the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s office continue to investigate this shooting. SLCPD Internal Affairs and the city’s Civilian Review Board are also conducting their own investigations.