WATCH: Police Bodycam Video Involving Fatal Shooting Released

NTD Newsroom
By NTD Newsroom
September 25, 2019US News
WATCH: Police Bodycam Video Involving Fatal Shooting Released
A car with front end damage is stopped behind a St. Paul police cruiser at the scene of an officer-involved shooting in the Midway area of St. Paul, Minn., on Sept. 15, 2019. (John Autey/Pioneer Press via AP)

Police bodycam footage was released by Minnesota authorities on Sep. 24 which showed a man holding a knife attacking a police officer. After being repeatedly warned, the officer fatally shot him.

The video shows officer Steven Mattson getting out of his police car after being rear-ended and then being charged by 31-year-old Ronald Davis, who appears to be holding a knife on his right hand.

NTD Photo
Investigators work the scene of an officer-involved shooting in the Midway area of St. Paul, Minn., on Sept. 15, 2019. (John Autey/Pioneer Press via AP)

Mattson repeatedly tells him to back off and tells him to drop the knife and then falls to the ground. The police officer then can be seen standing up and shooting Davis, who collapses.

“I see Officer Mattson defending himself, while retreating. And, as a son of a (retired) police officer, I can’t say that I can see anything beyond that we could have expected him to do,” St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter said at a press conference Tuesday, reported Fox 9.

Amid activists and other protests, St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell decided to release the bodycam video.

“I remain hopeful that quickly releasing this video will allow us to move forward with mature discourse about how such tragedies can be prevented in the future—without having to wade through the waters of irresponsible accusations of murder, calculated cries of injustice and threats made against an officer who had no choice but to defend himself against an immediate and violent attack,” Axtell said.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension says the man fatally shot by St. Paul police last weekend had confronted an officer with a knife before he was killed.

Mattson has been working in the police department for less than a year, he was not injured in the incident.

Warning: Contains graphic footage

The BCA, which is investigating the shooting, says Officer Steve Mattson was on patrol in the Midway neighborhood shortly before 6 p.m. on Sept. 15 when his squad car was rear-ended at an intersection by 31-year-old Ronald Davis. Authorities say Davis was holding a knife when he exited his vehicle and ignored Mattson’s commands to drop it. During the confrontation, Mattson shot Davis.

The BCA says a knife was recovered next to Davis’ body.

The officer’s body camera was activated during the shooting. St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter has asked Police Chief Todd Axtell to release the footage “as soon as reasonably possible.”

Defense attorney Marsh Halberg told Fox 9 that he sees two changes due to the faster releasing of bodycam footage.

“I think there’s a very conscious effort going on now in police departments to get out ahead of a case, whether it’s good news or bad news,” he said. “More importantly, I think police departments recognize nationwide that there’s a concern with image, reputation with the community, and concern about transparency.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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