Houston Police Union: Chief Acevedo Playing Politics by Firing Four Cops

The Houston Police Officers' Union is fired up after Chief Art Acevedo dismissed four cops involved in the shooting death of a suicidal man back in April.

The firings come as the Harris County District Attorney's office continues to investigate the case. The union is calling the firings "unjust and deplorable."

"This truly was a tragedy. But the chief is now spreading that tragedy to four other families by unjustly firing these officers and using them as political fodder," said HPOU President Joe Gamaldi. "This has sent a shock wave through our department that even if you de-escalate, even if you retreat, even if you use policy, training and the law, you will still lose your job as a Houston police officer."

Chief Acevedo plans to respond at an afternoon press conference.

Gamaldi says even the independent police oversight board, after reviewing the body cam videos, said the officers involved had acted accordingly and followed all non-lethal protocols before shooting and killing 27-year-old Nicolas Chavez, who was armed with a Taser.

"They did everything that everyone across this country is asking for law enforcement to do," he said. "They de-escalated and retreate for 15 minutes. Fifteen minutes. The used every non-lethan option available."

Gamaldi says the body cam video clearly shows Chavez asking the officers to kill him before pointing the Taser at them.

"It was clear when viewing the video these officers did not want to shoot Mr. Chavez, and did everything in their power not to," he said. "It's also clear the officers were justified by policy, training and the law."

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