Friends say man's death in officer-involved shooting was unjustified

By Ciara Rouege , Cathy Hernandez - Reporter

HOUSTON - The friends of a man shot and killed by an officer in northeast Houston say his death was unnecessary.

Investigators said Peter Gaines, 35, was damaging a traffic sign Saturday afternoon at the intersection of Eastex Freeway and Collingsworth when an officer tried to stop him. HPD said its possible Gaines was on PCP.

Police said the officer walked up to Gaines, asking him to calm down, but the man wouldn't stay back. The officer used a Taser twice to stop him before pulling out his gun and shooting, police said.

Investigators said Gaines had no weapon, and the officer involved was unharmed.

The officer said he had no choice. His name is K. Levi, he’s served in the Houston Police Department for four years.

Gaines' friends said the shooting was unjustified.

“They didn't have to shoot him. If he didn't stop, they could've shot him down there,” Turner said.

Relatives said Gaines' birthday was just two days ago.

"He'd take the shirt off your back, and he'd give it to you," Tracy Turner said.

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