Chief Lopez issues statement in light of recent shooting inciden - WFLA News Channel 8

Chief Lopez issues statement in light of recent shooting incidents

Posted: Updated:
DURHAM, N.C. -

Durham's chief of police issued a statement Friday in light of recent officer-involved shootings, including the most recent where a 17-year-old died in police custody.

"As the Durham Police Chief, I fully understand my responsibility to be transparent on controversial issues and cases, particularly in light of recent officer involved shootings," said Chief Jose Lopez. "Not only have three lives been lost in the last few months, the credibility of the Police Department is at stake, which is something we take very seriously," Lopez added.

Lopez said this is why the State Bureau of Investigation is asked to come in to handle officer involved shootings that result in injury or death.

Lopez said he understands the community's frustrations that come with the investigation process, but he is obligated to not compromise an investigation by speaking prematurely about the case.

"That would be a disservice to the SBI, the District Attorney's Office and, most importantly the victims, the families, and to you, the community," said Lopez.

During the course of an investigation, the SBI will talk to family members of the victim or victims, officers and witnesses.

"Like you, I eagerly await the full review of these investigations, "said Lopez. "I appreciate your patience, and can assure you that once these investigations are completed, I will make a full disclosure to the public about each case," Lopez added.

The SBI is currently investigating an incident earlier this week that occurred near Durham Police headquarters. Officer Samuel Duncan was transporting Jesus Huerta, 17, Tuesday morning to headquarters to pick up a warrant charging the teen with second-degree trespassing.

When the officer arrived, he heard a loud noise and jumped out of the patrol car, which then crashed into a nearby van.

Huerta's sister said police told her that a gun was involved in her brother's death, however in a press conference Tuesday, Nov. 19, Chief Lopez said it appeared that no officer discharged their weapon.

Duncan was placed on administrative leave with pay, which is standard procedure.

RELATED STORIES

  • Durham CountyMore>>

  • Duke University to hold Michael Brown forum Monday night

    Duke University to hold Michael Brown forum Monday night

    Monday, September 1 2014 4:59 AM EDT2014-09-01 08:59:24 GMT
    Lesley McSpadden, right, the mother of 18-year-old Michael Brown, watches as Brown's father, Michael Brown Sr., holds up a family pictureduring a news conference Aug. 11, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)Lesley McSpadden, right, the mother of 18-year-old Michael Brown, watches as Brown's father, Michael Brown Sr., holds up a family pictureduring a news conference Aug. 11, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
    The issues surrounding the deadly police shooting in Ferguson, Mo. will be discussed in the Triangle Monday night when Duke University will hold a town hall forum.
    The issues surrounding the deadly police shooting in Ferguson, Mo. will be discussed in the Triangle Monday night when Duke University will hold a town hall forum.
  • Granville Co. farmer donates 'ugly' corn to local charities

    Granville Co. farmer donates 'ugly' corn to local charities

    Saturday, August 30 2014 5:48 PM EDT2014-08-30 21:48:11 GMT
    Nearly $3,000 worth of corn was donated to the Produce Box by farmer Gary Fuller, of Granville County.Nearly $3,000 worth of corn was donated to the Produce Box by farmer Gary Fuller, of Granville County.
    Rather than throw away thousands of ears of "ugly but good" corn, foiled after very wet summer, a local farmer chose to donate them to the needy.
    Rather than throw away thousands of ears of "ugly but good" corn, foiled after very wet summer, a local farmer chose to donate them to the needy.
  • Former Marine closes in on goal to keep coffee shop open

    Former Marine closes in on goal to keep coffee shop open

    Saturday, August 30 2014 1:50 AM EDT2014-08-30 05:50:17 GMT
    Matt Victoriano's military background influenced every aspect of his Durham coffee house and bar, Intrepid Life.Matt Victoriano's military background influenced every aspect of his Durham coffee house and bar, Intrepid Life.
    A business owner and former Marine says he may be able to keep his Durham coffee shop open after receiving an outpouring of support from the community.
    A business owner and former Marine says he may be able to keep his Durham coffee shop open after receiving an outpouring of support from the community.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.