Family of man shot by Raleigh police officer calls for changes to department policy

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- The family of a man shot to death by Raleigh Police officers said Friday more should've been done to de-escalate the situation.

Reuel Rodrigues Nunez was shot and killed after throwing Molotov cocktails at police cars and even at officers the Southeast Police Precinct.

The family claims the officers failed to handle the situation as a mental health crisis.

"We look up to them and things like this, they affect all of us. It doesn't matter is if it's not your family or if it's a family member, we know this was wrong," Jasiel Rodriguez Nunez said.

Rodriguez Nunez's brother Jasiel and community activists detailed their demand for accountability Friday.

They said the RPD body camera footage shows officers failed to de-escalate the situation. In fact, on video officers can be heard challenging Nunez.

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Raleigh police released the bodycam footage of the encounter with a man who was setting fire to multiple police cars.

Nunez' family is demanding the following:

  • Officer PW Coats to be fired.
  • Officer Coats be placed on administrative leave without pay
  • Officer Coats Law Enforcement certification to be revoked.
  • Raleigh City Council and Mayor to financially invest in a Mobile Crisis Response Team/ Unit external of Law enforcement.
  • For Raleigh Police Department's ACORN unit to respond to any possible calls of service of someone in mental distress or having a mental health crisis.
  • For every officer on RPD to undergo De-Escalation, Crisis Intervention, and Character training, with a refresher course occurring at least once every year.

"We can start with training so that we have a baseline, and then (encourage) Chief Patterson Raleigh (and) City Council City Manager Marchall Adams Davis to create accountability when the training is not followed," said attorney Dawn Blagrove.

RPD has already unveiled a draft of a new de-escalation policy. The department said it wants to emphasize that it values life above all--both officers' lives and citizens' lives.

This incident is still under investigation by the SBI. Officer Coats remains on administrative leave.
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