DA: No charges in 3 different police shootings involving Austin officers

Officer involved shooting on Tech Ridge at San Paloma Apartments in North Austin (KXAN Photo/Kevin Schwaller)
Officer involved shooting on Tech Ridge at San Paloma Apartments in North Austin (KXAN Photo/Kevin Schwaller)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — No charges will be filed against the officers involved in three different officer-involved shootings with the Austin Police Department.

Travis County District Attorney Margaret Moore said her office saw no evidence of a crime in the three cases. The DA’s Office says they decided not to present the cases to a grand jury.

In April, Moore announced that not every use of force case involving an officer would be presented to a grand jury.

“The benefit for us is that we don’t have officers hanging out there for eight, nine, 10, 12, 13 months waiting for a grand jury,” Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday said at the time. “It can mess with them psychologically waiting that long, so we are in support of this.”

Before Moore took office, prosecutors presented every police shooting case to a grand jury. Now it only happens if the evidence shows a crime was committed, or the facts are in dispute.

In two of the shootings, the suspect was not hit or was wounded. However, in one dismissed case from September 2016, Cesar Garcia was shot and killed at a north Austin apartment complex.

APD said Garcia was armed with a rifle and refused officer commands to drop the weapon.

He was first hit with non-lethal rounds and still did not comply, before he was shot and killed.

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