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Omaha Police Chief says officers were compliant with OPD policies during officer involved shooting

Posted at 2:00 PM, Nov 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-24 06:44:16-05

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — For the past three nights, protesters have gathered outside Omaha Police Headquarters in response to the fatal shooting of Kenneth Jones.

Monday, police held their first press conference since the officer-involved shooting, giving more details and addressing the community.

Police chief Todd Schmaderer addressed this demand at the press conference.

“Whenever someone dies in police custody, a grand jury must be convened," Schmaderer said. "A grand jury provides for independent, civilian oversight of the event. The grand jury is not optional."

In accordance with Nebraska law, Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer says the department will not be releasing the bodycam footage from officers Richard Martier and Dan Faulkner. The purpose: to prevent any potential jurors from seeing evidence prior to the grand jury.

The department did share still images from that footage today, as well as give a detailed timeline of the events which lead to Kenneth Jones' death on Thursday night.

According to the police, officers approached a vehicle that was starting and stopping near 27th and Harrison St. After turning on their lights to conduct a traffic stop, they noticed someone in the back seat seemed to be reaching toward the floorboard.

As they approached the vehicle, officers told the occupants to put their hands in the air, and all complied but Jones who was in the backseat on the driver’s side.

Officers say they asked Jones to show his hands 14 times, told him to open the door six times and told him to stop reaching three times.

“As the chief, I’ve watched a lot of videos over the years," Schmaderer said. "This is one of the most non-compliant situations I’ve seen as chief.”

Jones was eventually pulled from the car, and while Officer Faulkner was trying to gain control, he traced his hands all the way down Jones' right arm, into his pants, where he felt the metal of a gun. At one point, he and Jones both had their fingers in the trigger guard.

This caused both officers to disengage and draw their guns. As Jones began to turn toward Officer Martier, Officer Faulkner fired his gun four times, striking Jones. When they approached Jones to begin performing life-saving measures, a gun was found under him.

Jones later died at Nebraska Medicine.

Both Faulkner and Martier are on paid administrative leave at this time. Schmaderer said he believes both officers were in compliance with the department's policies during the incident.

Right now, we know there will be a grand jury investigation into this case, we just don’t know when. COVID restrictions could play into how long it will take.

“I don’t know, I really don’t," Schmaderer said. "I guess I have no idea on that. Hopefully sooner than later.”

The chief says he will be releasing the bodycam footage of the incident, but it will have to be after the grand jury.

Watch Monday's news conference below or on our Facebook page.

3 News Now Reporter Jessika Eidson is providing live updates on Twitter:

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