Newly released dashcam footage shows how Sacramento cops attempted to run over Joseph Mann, a mentally ill black man, before pursuing him on foot and shooting him 14 times. He died at the scene. The incident took place on July 11, and in response, Mann’s family filed suit in federal court against the city. They now plan to update their claim after this footage revealed the officers tried to hit Mann with their vehicle. The Sacramento News and Review was quick to report on this graphic footage, which can be viewed here. The action in the clip quickly unfolds with about 35 seconds elapsing between the cops’ second attempt to run over Mann and the sound of shots being fired.
The Sacramento Bee reports how the footage’s audio was enhanced to make the officers’ words clearer. One of the cops is heard saying, “F*ck this guy.” The driver declares, “I’m going to hit him,” and his partner replies, “Okay. Go for it.” One of the cops says, “We’ll get him. We’ll get him.” The two officers involved in Mann’s death — Randy Lozoya and John Tennis — were called to the scene as backup. The Sacramento Bee spoke with Mann’s brother, Joseph, who stated, “They are officers that shouldn’t be in uniform. If this is their state of mind when they go to work, this doesn’t serve anyone well.”
The Washington Post reports how the incident began when neighbors called police to the scene, where they claimed Mann was “standing in the street, waving a knife” and behaving erratically. The Mann family lawsuit asserts that Joseph was “displaying obvious signs of mental distress,” and police contend that he had methamphetamine in his system. Mann also reportedly threatened police, volleyed a thermos in their direction, and refused to comply with orders to drop the knife. The family’s lawsuit alleges that police failed to deescalate the situation.
Lozoya and Tennis have been placed on desk duty pending a full investigation.