Santiago Quintero still cannot talk about his 23-year-old son’s untimely death nine months ago without his eyes welling up.
Yet, he courageously stands in front of community members holding up his hands, the same way his boy had done on January 3 when he was shot by a Wichita police officer.
John Paul Quintero died six hours after incident due to a cardiopulmonary arrest following extensive internal injuries.
To this day, the father remembers how his unarmed son was targeted before his eyes by a hostile, rash and out of control female cop.
Santiago is determined to make sure that his son did not lose his life in vain -not only has he lodged a federal lawsuit describing what happened, but he has openly come forward declaring that the Wichita police department has failed the community it serves.
The 49-page filing alleges that the police have a deep-rooted policy of relying on excessive force to subdue a situation, even when an actual and immediate threat is not imminent.
One of the attorneys representing Quintero is Thomas Bowers.
He says it is about time someone took a stand.
“There’s a pattern of violations linked to the city’s training and supervision regarding deadly force,” Bowers said
The night of the shooting
Ted McAdams lives just meters away from where the shooting took place.
He, along with several other neighbors, witnessed what happened.
His recollection of the incident is strikingly different from the police’s account of what happened on January 3.
The witness says Santiago and John Paul were sitting in a parked SUV outside a house where a party was underway.
When the police arrived they described the latter as confrontational; however, McAdams says the boy was compliant and his hands were up.
The official version states that John Paul reached towards an officer’s waistband, but witnesses once again claim that they saw no such move.
According to onlookers, the only time the victim’s hands went down was when one of the cops used the taser on him.
Another witness Dustin Deckard claims that an officer was aiming her rifle towards the boy and seconds later he was shot.
Wichita Racial Profiling Advisory Board’s vice Chairman Walt Chappell says the officer’s choice to fire shots was a preconceived decision aimed at aggravating the situation instead of managing it.
He added that the officer walked up to the victim with a rifle and that is a straight forward giveaway.
“You don’t go in ready to shoot first and ask questions later. There’s a lot of things you can do before you ever pull out a weapon.”
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