Family's independent autopsy of woman fatally shot by Baytown officer released

By Brandon Walker - Reporter

BAYTOWN, Texas - The attorneys and the family of Pamela Turner, the woman who was shot and killed by a Baytown police officer earlier last week, released the results of an independent autopsy Wednesday morning.

Police said an officer on May 13 was attempting to arrest Turner on an outstanding warrant when they began to struggle.

Police said the officer used his Taser on Turner, but she was able to take the Taser away from the officer. Police said the officer then fired several times.

WARNING! GRAPHIC VIDEO
Witnesses record deadly officer-involved shooting in Baytown
Editor's note: Because of its graphic nature, the video below has been edited.

The police officer was identified as Juan Delacruz.

Video of the encounter showed Delacruz, who police said had prior dealings with Turner, fired at least five shots. Turner was hit multiple times, police said.

"This was purposely done," said Chelsie Rubin, Turner's daughter.

According to the independent autopsy, Turner was shot three times -- in her cheek, her chest and her abdomen. The latter two were fatal.

The shot to the face left Turner unrecognizable, Crump said.

"Pamela Turner was lying on the ground helpless and the officer was out of harm’s way when he shot and shot and shot and shot and shot," attorney Ben Crump said. "She posed no imminent threat to the officer. There is nothing anyone can say to justify this killing. The officer looked her in the face and shot her dead when it was unnecessary for him to do so — it’s right there on the video. We are outraged and completely devastated."

The autopsy confirmed that Turner was not pregnant, despite her yelling that at Delacruz during the struggle.

The report also concluded Delacruz shot Turner from a distance, due to a lack of gunpowder residue on her body.

"You see it on the video. Don't take my word for it. He's retreating. She's still on the ground," Crump said.

Delacruz backing up is significant, the family said, stressing it confirms Turner's shooting was unjustified.

"The amount of distance between the two, there was no fear or danger or threat that my mom posed to this man, and he took her life," Turner's daughter Chelsie Rubin said.

Family and friends of Turner said Turner battled schizophrenia. They said the Baytown Police Department was aware of Turner's diagnoses.

Turner will be laid to rest Thursday at the Lilly Grove Baptist Church. Her eulogy will be delivered by Rev. Al Sharpton.

The Texas Rangers are taking over the investigation.

Delacruz has been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.

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