Federal lawsuit to be filed in Pamela Turner death against Baytown, local police, attorney Ben Crump says

Federal lawsuit filed in Baytown police shooting death of Pamela Turner
Federal lawsuit filed in Baytown police shooting death of Pamela Turner

HOUSTON – Attorney Ben Crump and the family of Pamela Turner announced Thursday that they’re filing a federal lawsuit against former Baytown police officer Juan Delacruz and the City of Baytown in her 2019 death.

“Today is a very hard day for me and my family, as we should be celebrating my moms 46th birthday, instead we are here once again in front of all of you demanding justice for her life that was taken from her,” Chelsea Rubin, Pamela Turner’s daughter said.

On May 13, 2019, according to investigators, Delacruz encountered 44-year-old Turner while on patrol and knew that she had warrants out for her arrest. Turner resisted arrest and was able to get hold of Delacruz’s taser and shock him with it, according to investigators. Investigators said that was when Delacruz fired, killing Turner.

Attorney Devon M. Jacob and NAACP president Bishop James Dixon also attended the event.

“He could have done any number of things to not use the deadly force he used. He shot her five times,” Attorney Ben Crump said.

Delacruz was charged with felony aggravated assault by a public servant. A grand jury indicted Delacruz in September of 2020.

Jacob said Delacruz has not been fired.

“There is absolutely no reason that this city should have stood up and said this is not going to be tolerated in our city. It very clear as a former police officer that this shooting was unlawful,” he said.

The pain and grief are also something Tamika Palmer is feeling. Her daughter, Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old Louisville emergency medical technician studying to become a nurse, was shot multiple times in March 2020 after being roused from her sleep by police at her door during a drug raid. A no-knock warrant was approved as part of a narcotics investigation. No drugs were found at her home. When the police came through the door using a battering ram, Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, fired once.

On Thursday, Palmer stood by Turner’s family showing her support.

“The disrespect for Black women to have to watch this on video is insane to have to beg for justice is so disrespectful,” Palmer said

After the conference, supporters sang Happy Birthday to Pamela Turner and released 46 balloons in the sky for her birthday.

Crump said they plan to have a march in honor of Pamela Turner on May 13, which marks two years since she was killed.

Attorney Devon M. Jacob said Delacruz has not been fired. A trial date for Delacruz has not yet been set. There is a status conference scheduled for May 25, where Jacob and family members hope a trial date will be set.

WATCH: Full presser held by Pamela’s family and attorney Ben Crump

Attorney Ben Crumps holds press conference for Pamela Turner
Attorney Ben Crumps holds press conference for Pamela Turner
At left, a police officer and a woman struggle in this image taken from video circulating on social media of a deadly officer-involved shooting in Baytown, Texas, May 13, 2019. At right, Pamela Turner is seen in a May 1, 2019, mugshot.
The daughter of Pamela Turner is consoled May 16, 2019, during a news conference in downtown Houston about her mother's death.
The memorial service for Pamela Turner on May 23, 2019. (KPRC2)
Chelsie Rubin, daughter of Pamela Turner, speaks out on anniversary of mother's death on June 13, 2019.
Juan Delacruz is seen in this Sept. 15, 2020, mug shot released by authorities. (HCDAO)

The confrontation was caught on video.

RELATED: Video shows confrontation between Baytown officer, woman before deadly shooting

Turner’s family said she suffered from mental illness.

Watch a video of the full event in the video player at the top of this article as soon as it can be processed by the KPRC 2 team.

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