LAS VEGAS, Nev. (702 Times, NV Globe) – Authorities released the findings of an inquiry into a police shooting on Election Day 2020 that killed a guy in a car after the man killed two people, injured a teenage girl, and abducted a 12-year-old child who died when he was shot as police approached.
The hearing on Jason Neo Bourne, a 38-year-old who changed his name because he loved a movie character, revealed that Bourne shot the youngster numerous times, including in the head, after police opened fire on the boy’s family’s Cadillac Escalade.
According to testimony submitted by Henderson police Detective Richard Christopher, the lone investigator questioned at the hearing labeled a public fact-finding inquiry, Bourne fired seven bullets with a.40 caliber pistol while sitting in the driver’s seat.
The hearing, presided over by a former state Assembly member and presented by a county prosecutor, did not resolve whether one or more of the 27 shots fired by police struck the boy sitting in the passenger seat next to Bourne — who continued talking with a 911 dispatcher until gunfire erupted and was heard exclaiming “Yeah,” as officers opened a second volley of fire.
However, “We believe Jason Bourne was responsible for the boy’s wounds,” Christopher said after summarizing results of autopsies of the four people who died that day.
Dianne Hawatmeh, 38, the kid’s mother, Veronica Muniz, 33, of Las Vegas, and the boy, Joseph Hawatmeh, were all killed. According to family attorney Roger Croteau, the boy’s 16-year-old sister was shot many times and is still paraplegic.
Family accuses Henderson police of murdering a 12-year-old kid during a hostage crisis
“We’re not making a statement one way or another who shot Joseph,” Croteau said following the emotional four-hour proceeding at the Clark County Commission auditorium.
Croteau is managing a federal complaint filed in October in Las Vegas by the boy’s father, Iehab Hawatmeh, against Henderson police, departmental managers, and the seven officers who fired rounds that day.
“We do know that (police) took the first shot,” the attorney said. “One second later, the car was lit up with … contagion firing. They rushed the vehicle and didn’t wait for SWAT or a negotiator to arrive.”
Police utilized 9mm pistols and.223-caliber tactical rifles against Bourne, who was equipped with a.40-caliber handgun. According to the inquiry, medical examiners did not recover any recognizable bullets from the boy’s body.
Clark County statute provides for a non-judicial public review instead of a coroner’s inquest following a police-related fatality if the district attorney makes a preliminary determination that the accused officers will not face criminal prosecution. The police themselves are not present.
Police body-worn camera footage and 911 audio shown Monday provided a heartbreaking and dramatic portrayal of 30 minutes of uncertainty that investigators said may have been sparked by Bourne’s rage about a noise complaint made by his downstairs neighbors days before the shooting.
It also highlighted apparent delusions and ramblings of a man who called police 911 from the Escalade, changed the pitch of his voice several times, identified himself variously as a character from the future, “not from this planet” and the super villain Bane from the movie, “Batman,” and demanded that police provide him with a helicopter within minutes.
Joseph Hawatmeh could be heard in the background when Bourne abruptly halted his train-of-thought statements to the 911 operator many times, stating the words “XM Satellite Radio 1.1 Gigawatts.”
Bourne had no criminal past and properly acquired his pistol before officially changing his name from Christopher Curry in 2014, according to Christopher, the police investigator.
Bourne spent approximately 15 years in the United States. Christopher served in the Air Force in numerous nations until being honorably discharged in 2017. He was a handicapped veteran whose roommate, a former Air Force man, told investigators he was writing a book, using marijuana on a daily basis, and occasionally covering the windows to keep others out.
The police detective said Bourne’s computer files showed he “strongly believed in QAnon theories,” including “that celebrities wear lifelike masks but are actually politicians that were part of a secret pedophile society that controlled the world.”
Christopher discovered allusions to Bourne referring to himself as a superhero protecting the world within Bourne’s handwritten notes.
Iehab Hawatmeh wiped his tears multiple times as he sat through Croteau’s four-hour trial with three other family members.
Croteau later stated that the material revealed to the public did not surprise them. He stated that the family has a solid wrongful death, negligence, and civil rights case against the police in federal court.
Henderson’s attorneys have filed filings requesting dismissal of the complaint, which seeks unspecified monetary damages. There are no scheduled court appearances.
“As difficult as the situation was, my client believes the death of his boy wasn’t necessary,” Croteau said. “His family has suffered badly.”
Credits: FOX 5 VEGAS
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