Crimes That Dominated Headlines In 2017
In December, an Arizona jury chose not to convict former Mesa police Officer Philip Brailsford in the fatal shooting of Daniel Shaver.
On Jan. 18, 2016, Brailsford and several other officers had responded to the La Quinta Inn & Suites in Mesa to investigate a report that someone had pointed a gun out a fifth-floor window. They suspected Shaver was involved.
Shaver, a 26-year-old father of two, can be heard crying and appears confused in video recorded by Brailsford’s body camera. In the footage, he says “Please do not shoot me” as he obeys a command to crawl toward the officers.
As he inched forward, Shaver reached toward his waistband, according to Brailsford, who then fired five rounds from his AR-15 rifle. Court documents obtained by HuffPost indicate the weapon was inscribed with the words “You’re fucked.” Shaver died at the scene.
No weapon was found on or near Shaver’s body. A detective assigned to investigate the case said it appeared Shaver was attempting to pull his pants up when he was shot. Brailsford was fired from the police department and accused of second-degree murder and reckless manslaughter.
The Maricopa County jury that sat through the six-week trial found Brailsford not guilty on Dec. 7.
“I just don’t understand how anybody could… say, ‘not guilty,’ that this is justified, that Daniel deserved this, and that Philip Brailsford doesn’t deserve to be held accountable for his actions,” Shaver’s wife, Laney Sweet, told CBS News.