Video shows fatal Ga. OIS of 'peeping Tom' suspect
Police were responding to a call of a man looking inside a neighbor's home with binoculars when the shooting occurred
Athens Banner-Herald, Ga.
ATHENS-CLARK COUNTY, Ga. — Athens-Clarke County police released the body-cam footage Thursday showing what happened on the night of April 20 when an officer fatally shot a 63-year-old man.
"It is my opinion that this shooting was justified," Athens-Clarke Deputy Police Chief Jeff Clark said during a news conference held to release the video.
"I don't want to influence the GBI operation or investigation, but based on the law the officer was protecting himself and not only him but another officer from a serious threat," Clark said.
The shooting claimed the life of Carlton Steve Brooks at his Hull Road home.
The video was shown to the media and Clark specifically pointed out when Brooks raised a shotgun in the direction of officer Ethan Marsden, who has been with the force about three years.
"Right there the officer has a decision to make. You talk about split-second decisions in police work and this is one of them," Clark said.
Police were dispatched about 11:40 p.m. to the location after a neighbor called to report that Brooks was in his home looking into her home with binoculars, according to Clark.
Police had previously been to Brooks' home for other issues on other days, he said.
In the video, the officer shouts that he sees Brooks with a weapon.
"Sir put the weapon down," Marsden shouted from his position in the open yard.
"If you look around there is no cover, no concealment, so the officer just retreats," Clark said.
Marsden continues to order the man to drop the weapon and when the door opens, Brooks steps into the doorway and raises the gun.
Two shots are fired by Marsden. Brooks steps back inside and he can be heard shouting, "What did you shoot me for?"
Brooks then drops to the floor of this home.
"Sir do not touch that weapon. We're coming to help you," the officer shouts as he advances to the doorway.
Clark said the GBI is still investigating the shooting.
"I want to extend my condolences to the family of Mr. Brooks," Clark said. "Certainly my prayers are with the family in this time and also likewise I want to extend the same thing to the officers that were involved."
©2019 Athens Banner-Herald (Athens, Ga.)