* (Disclaimer: This video content is intended for educational and informational purposes only) *
Austin, Texas — Austin Police Department released video footage of an officer-involved shooting that happened August 19. At approximately 4:35 p.m., the Austin Police Department responded to a 9-1-1 call of a male pedestrian on a high-speed roadway at the 2100 block of South US Highway 183 Northbound. As officers were responding to this location, they received updated information that this male was located in the middle of the highway. This male was later identified as Lashondell Gillespie.
The first officers arrived on scene at about 4:37 p.m., and located Gillespie who appeared to be aggressive, in the middle of the highway lanes of traffic. An officer reported Gillespie appeared to have a knife in his hand. At about 4:40 p.m., additional officers began to arrive on scene, and Gillespie advanced towards the officers with a knife. Officers gave Gillespie commands to drop the knife. He did not drop the knife and continued to move towards the officers with the knife. Two APD officers then fired shots as Gillespie moved closer to them.
Gillespie sustained injuries, fell to the ground, and still refused to drop the knife. Officers continued to command Gillespie to drop the knife. Gillespie continued to refuse to drop the knife. Then, at approximately 4:44 p.m., Gillespie was tased, disarmed and officers safely approached him to render aid. Gillespie was transported to a local hospital by Austin Travis County EMS with serious injuries. Gillespie is currently in stable condition at a local hospital. Gillespie is not currently charged with a crime and it is unknown if future charges are pending. The officers on scene did not sustain physical injuries.
This incident was captured on body worn camera. Per APD protocol, both officers who fired their duty weapons and the officer who deployed his taser have been placed on Administrative Leave. The two officers involved in the shooting have 11 years of service with the Department. The Officer involved in the tasing has 17 years of service with the Department. APD will conduct two concurrent investigations into this incident: a criminal investigation by the APD Special Investigations Unit in conjunction with the Travis County District Attorney’s Office, and an administrative investigation conducted by the APD Internal Affairs Unit, with oversight from the Office of Police Oversight.
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