TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA/NBC News Channel) – The Broward County state attorney charged a police officer Friday in a 2021 shooting that left a man paralyzed.
Officer Henry Andrews is charged with one count of culpable negligence, inflicting actual personal injury responding to a call in July 2021.
That call forever changed the life of Michael Ortiz, who was having a panic attack and had to call 911 for help.
Hollywood police responded and instead of aiding Ortiz after he was already lying on the floor, handcuffed, Officer Andrews shot him in the back, paralyzing him from the waist down.
Hollywood police admitted the mistake in a statement earlier this year, saying Andrews intended to use his stun gun.
“Just to that police officer why. Why you had the need to shoot me? Why there were six grown people and they can’t put me down, cuff me and that’s it but then they had to use violence,” Ortiz previously told NBC6.
Andrews’ attorney sent a statement to NBC6, saying, “Henry Andrews has been a dedicated public servant for 20 years. In responding to a difficult and chaotic situation, Officer Andrews intended to deploy his taser and mistakenly discharged his firearm. There was absolutely no intent to harm in this case. He and his family continue to have Mr. Ortiz in their thoughts and prayers.”
The case was investigated by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Andrews has been on administrative duties. The charge is a misdemeanor and carries up to a year in jail.