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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Former Philadelphia Police officer Ryan Pownall is facing homicide charges in connection to a deadly confrontation with 30-year-old David Jones back in June of 2017.
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner made the announcement Tuesday morning during a press conference.
On June 8, 2017 Pownall stopped Jones for illegally riding a dirt bike near the 4200 block of Whitaker Avenue. A struggle ensued as the officer felt a gun in Jones’ waistband, then Jones reportedly resisted and started running. Pownall’s gun jammed during his first attempt to fire, a shot that was reasonable, police say, but surveillance video shows the second round hit Jones from 10 feet away; the third hit him in the back from 35 feet away.
“As Jones ran, unarmed, Pownall fired at least three shots towards Jones and traffic, hitting Jones twice in the back. Jones was searched at the scene, no gun was recovered on his person,” said Krasner.
Prosecutors acknowledge Jones threw his gun away during the confrontation.
The Fraternal Order of Police surrounded by members of Pownall’s family and his lawyer issued a blistering response.
“Today’s meritless indictment clearly illustrates a DA who had an anti-law enforcement agenda,” said FOP Lodge 5 President John McNesby.
“He encountered someone who was armed with a pistol, pulled it from his waist, a struggle ensued, Officer Pownall was justified in his actions that night,” said Fred Parri.
This was not the first time Pownall had shot a civilian. In 2010, he shot a man who was also running away at the time, according to the department.
Pownall, a 12-year-veteran of the force, was suspended and later dismissed.
Pownall is being held without bail.