ATLANTA — The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said there is no footage from body cameras of the fatal shootout between a Georgia State Patrol trooper and protester Wednesday near the site of Atlanta’s proposed public safety training center.
GBI officials said protester Manuel Esteban Paez Teran, 26, was shot and killed by GSP troopers. This occurred after officials said Teran shot the trooper without warning.
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Friends and fellow protestors of Teran have repeatedly claimed to Channel 2 Action News that they were peacefully protesting.
Mike Register, the Director of the GBI, said the protesters are not peaceful, but were violent on many occasions.
“Arson, attacking citizens, shooting police officers, using explosives,” Register said at a news conference Wednesday.
GBI Director Mike Register said several agencies raided the proposed facility site Wednesday morning to clear the area of protesters who have been occupying the property for months. As law enforcement moved in, officers found Teran inside a tent in the woods.
Officers gave verbal commands to Teran to come out, but Teran did not comply. According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Teran then shot a Georgia State Patrol Trooper. That’s when officers returned fire in self-defense, according to the GBI.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation says forensic ballistic analysis confirmed that the projectile recovered from the trooper’s wound matches Teran’s handgun.
Fellow protesters told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution they questioned the official account of events and said body camera footage from law enforcement officials who responded to the incident would help explain what happened that day.
GBI told the AJC that footage does not exist because it was not captured on body camera.
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According to a GBI “face sheet” obtained by AJC, GSP troopers were the only ones involved in the encounter, and that responding law enforcement departments arrived after the incident concluded.
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A GSP spokesperson told AJC that most troopers are not issued body-worn cameras, but they do have dashboard cameras in their patrol cars.
It is unclear if any GSP dashboard cameras caught the incident.
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