An Austin, Texas, police officer was fired Monday after internal investigators found him guilty of improper conduct when he shot and killed a naked, black teen in February.
On the morning of Feb. 8, Officer Geoffrey Freeman who is black, responded to a disturbance call on the city's north side, the Statesman reported. A short time later, he found David Joseph, 17, naked in the street. According to police, Freeman exited his vehicle and approached Joseph, who ignored orders and charged at him. The officer opened fire.
Fox7 says that according to an autopsy report, Joseph "was struck by two bullets fired at a distance of greater than 2-3 feet." He was fatally hit in the heart. A toxicology report found marijuana, a histamine substance, and what the Joseph family said was Xanax was in his system.
In the wake of the shooting, Austin Mayor Steve Adler joined a rally protesting Joseph's death and called for an accelerated investigation. Austin police chief Art Acevedo also held a press conference with members of the North Austin community, a move the police officers' union denounced, the Statesman said.
In a nine-page memo released as Freeman was fired, internal investigators said Freeman had violated department policies concerning "response to resistance, encountering people exhibiting symptoms of substance-induced delirium and neglect of duty," the Statesman reported.
"We are glad to know that the City of Austin thinks David’s life mattered, and that officer Freeman will not be on the streets again,” David's brother Fally said in a statement.
Since taking office almost a decade ago, Acevedo has fired three officers who were involved in shootings, according to the Statesman. A Texas law enforcement association denounced Monday's announcement, saying there had been a rush to judgment.
Rob covers business, economics and the environment for Fusion. He previously worked at Business Insider. He grew up in Chicago.