On Monday, a 26-year-old man was shot and killed by a police officer during a traffic stop in downtown Orlando. The police stated that the man failed to comply with the officer’s commands and made a motion as if reaching for a gun, although no gun was found at the scene.
The officer involved in the shooting was unharmed and has been placed on paid administrative leave while the Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigates the incident.
According to the police statement, the incident took place around 1:50 a.m. in downtown Orlando, an area that has recently experienced an increase in criminal activity. The man, identified as Derek Diaz, 26, was pulled over based on reasonable suspicion of involvement in drug-related activities.
Orlando Police Chief Eric Smith announced in a news briefing that Diaz was shot by the officer and later pronounced dead at a local hospital.
Chief Smith stated that he has personally reviewed the body camera footage, which will be released to the public within 30 days. He explained, “The officers were interacting with an individual when the person made a sudden movement, prompting the officer to discharge his weapon.”
Chief Smith acknowledged the challenges faced by the police in patrolling downtown Orlando. He stated, “Enforcing the law and maintaining public safety in downtown has always been demanding due to the high volume of people.
We have been proactive in our enforcement and patrols in this area, which has resulted in the seizure of numerous firearms. I believe we are doing our best under the circumstances.”