Houston Police Officer K. Levi fatally shot unarmed Peter Matthew Gaines at approximately 5:45 p.m. last night, March 12, 2016.
Police report that Levi, from his vehicle, saw Gaines “damaging a street sign,” and thus exited his vehicle and approached Gaines. Police also claim Gaines then charged Levi, and that Levi shot Gaines two times with his taser before fatally shooting him “more than one time” with his firearm.
However, an eyewitness told ABC13, “The police was not in danger to kill that man. I’m sorry,” and the officer was not injured.
Gaines’ family and friends were also quickly on the scene, decrying the shooting, as well.
“They didn’t have to shoot him. If he didn’t stop, they could’ve shot him down there,” said Gaines’ friend, Tracy Turner.
“He’d take the shirt off (his) back, and he’d give it to you,” she said, adding that his birthday was just two days ago.
Houston police shot and killed at least two unarmed black men last year, according to their own records. Of the 47 people Houston Police shot at last year, 40 were black or hispanic, only two were white, three were “unidentified,” and one was a juvenile, so their ethnicity was not released.
While Houston Police maintain that Gaines was approached for damaging a traffic sign, and the officer who killed him “suspects he was on PCP,” no images of a damaged sign or toxicology reports have been released as of this writing.