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FBI is looking into controversial, deadly officer-involved shooting of man on his knees, Acevedo says

HOUSTON – Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo admitted to Channel 2 Investigates Wednesday that the FBI has requested information into the deadly officer-involved shooting that left a man dead in April.

“They have been given everything that they have asked for and I made the call to the SAC here locally,” Acevedo said in a press conference Wednesday.

Nicolas Chavez, 27, was shot dead while he was on his knees by HPD officers on April 21 in southeast Houston. Before being shot and killed, officers had deployed tasers and bean bags at Chavez.

The shooting came under fire when a civilian video emerged showing that Chavez was on his knees at the time of the shooting. When controversy erupted, Acevedo held a press conference.

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“I’ve got some concerns that I will not be able to say whether it’s justified or not until I finish getting into what people knew, what they perceived,” he said in the press conference eight days after Chavez was killed. “I’ve got some tough questions to ask. They may be answered, they may not be answered, but the only way we’re going to know is by letting the investigation take its course," he added.

Now, the FBI is asking questions and looking video from the incident. Acevedo admitting during Wednesday’s news conference that the video of the shooting was difficult to watch.

READ ALSO: Groups call for HPD to release body camera footage from recent officer-involved shootings

“I’ve already told you that when you look at that video it is shocking to watch. It’s hard to watch,” he said.

There have been six officer-involved shooting deaths involving the Houston Police Department since mid-April. The FBI monitors every officer-involved shooting nationally, however when Channel 2 Investigates asked if the department has turned over any information in the other recent shooting Acevedo said, “I don’t remember any other shootings other than the Chavez one, can you think of any other? We know of Harding Street and Mr. Chavez shooting.”

Officers say they fired their guns when Chavez lunged at them. Chavez was on his knees, holding a piece of rebar at the time.

Acevedo says HPD’s internal investigation is being conducted rapidly.

“Between the 5th and the 10th of June, we should be done with our administrative internal affairs investigation,” he said.


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