The San Francisco Police Department on Thursday presented camera footage of the man who was shot by officers in the Tenderloin last month.
The video revealed that when officers shot 54-year-old Richard Everett, he had been advancing up the sidewalk with the knife, a duffel bag and a crate, seemingly believing he could leave the scene, while officers made it clear he could not.
Soon after Everett began to advance up the sidewalk and drew a knife, officers — standing behind cars or in the middle of Jones Street — began to shoot. It appeared from footage that it was only after officers began shooting that Everett turned toward them, gesticulating wildly with the 8.5-inch knife.
He was quickly felled by incoming fire, and collapsed face-down on the ground.
Everett remains in serious condition, according to Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital.
It was unclear why officers began to shoot. Up until that point, the officers had tried calmly and insistently for more than 15 minutes to get Everett to drop his knife. He refused. One officer said to another that Everett appeared to be rambling.
When a bystander told officers that Everett is called Louisiana, they began to call him by that name. But Everett continued to carry the knife, and it appeared that he thought he could wander off, knife in hand, without any consequences.
The department, in a virtual town hall meeting today at 3 p.m., provided its legally mandated update on the police shooting and showed footage of the incident, which occurred on Jones Street between Ellis and Eddy streets.
Police officers responded to a 911 call at 10:22 p.m. regarding a person who was holding a knife and threatening people, according to Acting Commander Mark Im, who presented the department’s findings.
In audio of the 911 call presented at the meeting, viewers could hear as a resident looking out his window at the man told the police dispatcher that the man had threatened people and had been pepper-sprayed. “Hey! Put that knife away!” the caller yelled at Everett, according to the 911 call.
The caller was viewing Everett from his ground-floor window.
Officers then arrived at the scene at 10:27 p.m. and yelled at pedestrians to leave the area, quickly requesting an ambulance and speaking to the man, later identified as Everett. “Put the knife down,” one officer said.
That officer’s body-camera footage showed Everett, hooded in a red-and-black plaid jacket when they arrived on the scene, standing on the pavement in front of an apartment, raising a knife up and down. Most pedestrians had, by then, left the area, and officers continued to clear the block.
Shortly after they arrived, the officers blocked the sidewalks with their patrol cars to keep passers-by away. They continued to speak to Everett, asking him to put down the knife.
“Sir, we’re not here to hurt you. Okay? But we got to figure out what’s going on. We can’t do that until you put the knife down,” said an officer, according to the body camera footage.
According to Commander Im, Everett responded saying, “Almighty God gave me this knife.”
A person standing by who claimed to know Everett also spoke to him, according to the footage. “You gotta put the knife down,” the spectator said.
After approximately 15 minutes of back-and-forth conversation between Everett and the officers, body-camera footage showed Everett picking up a milk crate and bag and walking down the sidewalk, in the general direction of several officers, drawing the knife from his waistline.
The distance between him and the officers at the time the officers began shooting was unclear from the footage, and the department did not disclose it.
The officers responded by shooting at him 13 times — seven bean-bag rounds and, within seconds, six handgun rounds, according to the police. Everett ran wildly at the officers after the initial shots were fired, swinging his knife and dropping his belongings on the ground. He collapsed in the middle of the street, twitching as a semi-circle of officers advanced towards him. People screamed “No!” from the surrounding area.
He was then lifted by officers onto a gurney before being transported to the hospital.
Two officers shot Everett: Gabriel Arteaga and Russell Lucia, both patrol officers with Tenderloin Station.
There were no comments from the public following the presentation. The event is currently under investigation by the San Francisco Department of Police Accountability, as well as the District Attorney’s Office.