SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Sacramento Police released video from a shootout with a double-homicide suspect earlier this month.
The shooting happened on Sept. 7th on 27th Avenue near Franklin Blvd, a week after two people were found dead on Janrick Avenue.
Sacramento Police have released video of shootings in the past, as part of a transparency effort pushed by the city. But this is the first time the department has released a video that involves an officer being shot.
The heart-pounding moments were captured on video as five officers attempted to make a traffic stop on a black truck driven by Eric Arnold, 41. He was wanted in the deaths of his ex-girlfriend, 45-year-old Erica Wallace, and her daughter, 17-year-old Kiara LaSalle.
The video shows officers, including a 27-year veteran of the department, Tim Martin, yelling for the suspect to put his hands up and exit the vehicle.
Seconds later, Arnold exits the truck, turns toward officers and immediately opens fire.
“It was rather shocking to see the way he came out of the car so suddenly and turned on us and started shooting,” said Officer Martin.
Officers fired 36 rounds at Arnold, hitting him 14 times. He died at the scene.
“I don’t like the idea of shooting somebody,” Martin said, “but if he was trying to kill me — which I believe he was trying to kill at least one of us — you do what you do to survive.”
Martin was struck in the abdomen, two inches from the bottom of his bulletproof vest.
“I realize I was almost killed. If the bullet went 2 inches lower, it would have entered my abdominal cavity, and I don’t know what it could have done,” he said.
Now, the hope with releasing these videos is to continue to build trust with the community.
“We want people to see what happened, and to see this is why we did what we did,” said Martin.
Officer Martin says he’s grateful to be alive. While he sustained injuries from the force of the bullet hitting his vest, it saved him from serious damage.
Meanwhile, the second officer injured a 12-year veteran with the department is still recovering.