Police in Southaven, Mississippi went to the wrong address to execute an arrest warrant and instead, executed the innocent man that lived there.
Ismael Lopez, an auto mechanic, was shot dead by police around 11:30 p.m. Sunday night while standing in the doorway of his home on Surrey Lane, reported WREG.
Officers claimed that a dog in the home charged at them and that an officer shot Lopez multiple times after he refused to obey orders to drop a weapon. Lopez’s family says the police version of events is not true.
DeSoto County, Miss., District Attorney John Champion admitted Monday that it was possible that officers went to the wrong address. Southaven police were sent to get a domestic violence suspect at 5878 Surrey Lane. Lopez lived just across the street at 5881 Surrey Lane.
Lopez had no warrants out for his arrest and officers had no reason to be at his residence.
“He was not wanted for anything at all,” Champion acknowledged.
Champion gave a brief rundown of the killer’s version of events prior to the shooting, saying that a pit bull apparently burst out of the home, prompting one of the officers to fire shots, reported The Memphis Commercial Appeal.
They claim that a man pointed a gun at officers through the open door. After officers reportedly warned him to put down the weapon, one of them opened fire. Champion said that it is believed that one officer shot at the dog and the other shot at the man.
The killing of the innocent man was not recorded because Southaven police do not have body cameras.
However, a Lopez family friend, 23-year-old Jordan Castillo, said the account Lopez’s wife gave of what happened contradicted the official report. According to Castillo, Lopez did have two guns: a Glock pistol that he kept in the bedroom and a .22-caliber rifle, which was kept in the front room.
Lopez’s wife told Castillo that after the shooting, the rifle was where it was usually kept. Castillo added that he couldn’t imagine that Lopez would have come out with a gun aimed at police.
“It doesn’t make sense at all,” he said. “She said when he got up, she heard the footsteps all the way up to the door, she heard the doorknob turn, and then, after the doorknob turned, it was just gunshots from there.”
The officer who fired the fatal shots has been placed on nonenforcement status but was not even suspended.
(Article By James Carter)