Video of police shooting of Dixon Rodriguez released
Surveillance video of a police-involved shooting in Perth Amboy has been released, 1 and a half years after the fatal shooting.
Dixon Rodriguez was shot and killed by Perth Amboy police officers after a confrontation on Hall Avenue in early December 2013.
In the video released, Rodriguez is seen talking with two officers who were responding a 911 call. Rodriguez gets into a physical altercation with one of the officers and then the other shoots and kills him. Authorities have said Rodriguez was armed with a knife. Rodriguez's family denies that claim.
Walter Luers, an attorney working on the case, sued to get the surveillance video released.
"The video is probably the best objective evidence of what happened. Unfortunately it's far away. It's a little bit grainy," Luers says.
The video does show Rodriguez's arm making a lunging motion, but it is not clear if he was holding a knife.
"It's not definitive. I think that those who feel the shooting is not justified will feel the video supports them, and those who think the shooting was legally justified will also find support in the video," says Luer.
In a statement, Perth Amboy Mayor Wilda Diaz called the incident a tragedy.
"I want to assure our community that our police department has taken all necessary steps to ensure the safety and well-being of our residents," she says.
Perth Amboy Deputy Chief Lawrence Cattano says that the officers' response saved lives.
The Middlesex County prosecutor did rule the police were justified in their use of deadly force.
The family of Rodriguez has filed a lawsuit against the police department.