Baytown officer Juan Delacruz shot and killed Pamela Shantay Turner, 45, in May 2019 after initially attempting to arrest her because she had pending arrest warrants. Police previously said that Turner grabbed and used Delacruz’s taser on him during a fight between the two.
The Texas Rangers led the investigation into the shootings and submitted their findings to the Harris County Attorney’s Office for review. Prosecutors then presented the results to a grand jury who returned with the indictment, a Baytown police press release said.
“We have confidence in our judicial system and while we wait for this case to go through legal process, we ask our community to continue to be patient and have confidence and trust in these processes,”
Delacruz is an 11-year veteran from the department, Baytown police said. He is still employed but has been placed in non-enforcement status, Lt. Steve Dorris, a Baytown police spokesman. Non-enforcement status means Delacruz is not working on the streets and his police powers have been suspended.
Turner had schizophrenia, according to civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who represents Turner’s family.
How shooting developed
Police said Delacruz was patrolling an apartment complex in the Houston suburbs when he saw Turner, who he knew had pending arrest warrants. He tried to arrest her, the police said.
Shaky cellphone video captured the interaction. Turner yells at the officer, “I’m going! I’m actually going to my house!” and then accuses Delacruz of molesting her.
When he tries to handcuff the woman, she loosens and asks Delacruz to use his taser. Turner slowly falls to the floor, as the video shows.
An argument ensues and Turner keeps yelling, “Why?” Delacruz continues his attempts to get her into custody, and Turner hits his arms and yells, “I’m pregnant!”
The woman appears to be reaching for the officer, who steps back and fires five rounds, as the video shows.
Police later said Turner “was able to gain control of the taser and used it on the officer.”
Delacruz attempted first aid, police said, but Turner was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police spokesman Dorris said last May that Turner was not pregnant.
CNN’s Joe Sutton, Tina Burnside, Holly Yan and Eliott C. McLaughlin contributed to this report.