LA MARQUE, Texas – La Marque police released video Monday from the bodyworn camera of the officer who shot a man to death earlier this month.
The City of La Marque said they received requests for Officer Jose Santos’ bodyworn camera footage in the Dec. 9 shooting of 22-year-old Joshua Feast.
“The Texas Public Information Act requires this specific footage to be released near the end of December. In keeping with the city’s promise of transparency, the video is being released early on Monday, December 21, 2020,” a news release from the City of La Marque said.
The video, which contains no audio for the first 30 seconds, showed Santos fired his weapon just as he was stepping out of his cruiser.
WARNING: This video contains graphic images and language. Viewer discretion is advised.
“We know our community has questions,” said La Marque Police Chief Kirk Jackson. “We are releasing information as soon as we are able while maintaining the integrity of the investigation and complying with our legal obligations. We ask for continued patience as the investigation unfolds. Our condolences, thoughts and prayers remain with the family and friends of Joshua Feast.”
According to the La Marque Police Department, no employment action can be taken against any officer in an officer-involved-shooting, or under any other circumstances, until all investigations are complete.
“There have been calls from the community for the immediate termination of Officer Santos,” said La Marque City Manager Tink Jackson. “If we were to take an employment action on any officer in an officer-involved shooting, or to even begin the administrative investigation before the Sheriff’s Office investigation is complete, we could jeopardize the criminal investigation. There is a manner and process in which any personnel actions must be taken, so they comply with the law. That takes time. We ask for your continued patience.”
Police said victim Joshua Feast had been named a person of interest in shootings in La Marque. Feast had two outstanding felony warrants, including felon in possession of a firearm and felony evading arrest, police said. Investigators said on the evening of Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2020, surveillance video identified who police believed to be Feast.
Police said around 11:10 p.m., Officer Jose Santos was dispatched to see if Feast was near a residence on Pirtle Street and attempted to arrest him on the outstanding warrants.
Upon arrival, investigators said Officer Santos saw a person believed to be Feast leaning into the passenger side of a vehicle. Police said Santos exited his patrol vehicle, called out to Feast, and observed that Feast was holding a handgun. Santos said Feast abruptly turned towards him. Investigators said Santos then discharged one round from his pistol. Feast was shot in his back, officers said.
Investigators said almost immediately following the shot, the handgun that Feast was holding fell to the ground. Feast ran nearly 30 yards before collapsing in the driveway of a nearby residence in the 1000 block of Pirtle, police said.
Santos immediately called for medical personnel, investigators said. A backup officer arrived and Feast was transferred to an ambulance to receive emergency medical attention, police said.
Investigators said the gun that fell from Feast’s hand was recovered by officers and turned over to the Galveston County Sheriff’s Office investigators on scene. While Feast was in the ambulance receiving treatment, a second handgun was recovered after it fell from his clothing, investigators said. The second handgun was also turned over to the sheriff’s office, according to authorities.
Monday afternoon, after the body camera video circulated throughout this community of less than 20,000 people, protestors gathered at La Marque’s City Hall.
The protest was small, about 30 people, but spirited.
Protestors called for the immediate firing and prosecution of Officer Jose Santos, who remains on administrative leave, and the resignation of La Marque’s Police Chief, Kirk Jackson.
Also under fire is Galveston County Sheriff, Henry Trochesset, who has been accused by attorney Ben Crump as running a biased investigation into the officer involved shooting, which remains active.
“He can say what he wants to say. We will investigate it, examine all the facts and turn it over to the DA’s office,” Sheriff Trochesset said Monday.