Families of 2 men killed in separate San Francisco officer-involved shootings speak out

Lyanne Melendez Image
Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Family of 2 men killed in SF officer-involved shootings speak out
The families of two men killed in separate San Francisco officer-involved shootings spoke in front of city hall to address the district attorney's decision not to file charges against the officers.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Surrounded by supporters and her attorney, Mario Woods' mother rejected the District Attorney's decision to not charge the officers who shot her son.

"I'm not ok with this Gascon," a very emotional Gwen Woods told a crowd on the steps of San Francisco's Hall of Justice.

RELATED: DA says SF cops won't be charged in fatal Woods, Gongora shootings

They made reference to the December 2, 2015 shooting captured on cellphone video where one can see 26-year-old Woods holding a knife that witnesses say, had previously been used against another man. Despite police shooting beanbag rounds at Woods, he never dropped it and police then fired 26 rounds.

Civil rights attorney, John Burris, said Gascon did not have the courage to charge the officers.

"If you don't want to say it's murder but holding people accountable for involuntary manslaughter is clearly an option that should have been exercised," said Burris, the family's attorney.

RELATED: Video shows fatal police shooting in San Francisco

An anonymous viewer has given ABC7 News video showing the fatal police shooting of a homeless man in San Francisco's Mission District.

But the district attorney's office said Tuesday when it comes to officer-involved shootings, the current law protects them from any charges if they feel their lives are in danger.

"The second that an officer manifests a fear for their own safety or someone else's, they can use force," explained Max Szabo, spokesperson for the D.A,'s office.

Family members of 45-year-old Luis Gongora-Pat were also at the rally. A home security video doesn't show the moment he was shot in 2016 but you can hear when police fired several rounds within 30 minutes of arriving at the scene.

Mario Woods' mother said the case doesn't end here. "I'm still going to fight for him. You're never going to forget his name," she cried out.

These two cases will now be forwared to the State Department of Justice for future review. The state attorney general has the option of bringing charges against these officers.