Results of investigation into officer-involved shooting expected to be turned over to DA today
MADISON – The investigation by the Madison County Sheriff’s Department into an officer-involved shooting is expected to be turned over the Madison County District Attorney’s office today.
Dana Fletcher, 39, was killed by Madison Police officers in the parking lot of Planet Fitness on Highway 72 in Madison on Oct. 27.
Madison Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Stacy Bates said early in the investigation that police officers responded to a call at the fitness center about Fletcher and a female videoing people and asking personal questions inside the business.
After officers arrived, an altercation took place between them and Fletcher and a taser was used to get him under control and disarmed, but was unsuccessful.
“Fletcher exited the car with the gun in his hand and pointed at officers,” Bates said. “Two Madison police officers fired their weapons and Fletcher was struck.”
Fletcher was pronounced dead at the scene.
Since the shooting, calls to release the body cam footage to prove the officers’ account of what happened has been rebuffed by the sheriff’s department, who is investigating the incident since it involved Madison Police officers.
An activist from Birmingham made it clear Tuesday protests could break out in Madison and surrounding areas. Leading an activist group called Outcast Voters League, Frank Matthews is pushing for video evidence of what happened that Sunday afternoon to be released to the public.
Whether the video from the officers’ body cameras will be released once the investigation has been turned over to the DA’s office is not clear. District Attorney Rob Broussard was adamant at a town hall-type meeting organized by the NAACP on Monday that his office would not bend to public pressure.
“I realize there is frustration from among the public about wanting more transparency, saying ‘we want the body cams.’ That would be great, but let me tell you something, the public is not entitled to that evidence at this time,” Broussard told a crowd gathered at the meeting.
Madison County Sheriff Kevin Turner said Wednesday that once his department has completed their investigation it will be up to the City of Madison and the Madison Police Department to make that call.
Over the course of the past eleven days since the shooting, speculation and accusations have grown against the police and the sheriff’s department account of what happened. That was fueled by Fletcher’s wife posting on Facebook that her husband was unarmed.
Birmingham-based attorney Benjamin Crump said has been retained by Fletcher’s family. He has said that Fletcher’s wife is absolutely “certain” her husband was unarmed when he was confronted by police.
“I have seen the video. Whether you want to believe or you don’t there was a weapon involved,” Turner said at Monday’s meeting. “I am telling you as the sheriff of this county, on my job and on my word, there was a weapon involved, pointing at the officers.”