Former police officer weighs in on videos showing state trooper shooting, killing man in Converse

A second witness video gives a close-up perspective of the moments leading up to a state trooper shooting and killing a man in Converse.

The video, acquired by KSAT, starts three seconds before the trooper, who the Texas Department of Public Safety has not identified, shoots Luis Navarro, 37.

In the video, Navarro is seen pointing to a woman next to him as the trooper yells at Navarro to get on the ground.

After the trooper files a single gunshot, the video shows Navarro dropping to the group, tossing a shirt to the side.

Earlier this week, KSAT obtained another video of the shooting from a wider angle.

KSAT is sharing the bystander videos as a means of offering viewers as much transparency as possible.

While the videos do not show the DPS trooper’s perspective, they provide additional context to an incident where a person was killed by law enforcement. The information shared by authorities so far has been limited.

KSAT has requested the body camera footage, but no DPS policy requires the release of the footage and the state agency has not said whether video from this incident will be released.

Through an attorney, Navarro’s mother, father, and brother said they supported KSAT’s decision to post the complete and unedited videos.

**WARNING: The video contains graphic footage. Viewer discretion is advised.

Kevin LaChappelle, a criminal justice professor and former law enforcement officer in California, watched both angles of the shooting.

“I’m not sure why the officer decided to fire,” he said. “I think that will be interesting to learn from their investigation because I did not see a weapon particularly.”

KSAT has asked DPS three times if Navarro had a weapon. DPS has not answered that question.

“What did you take away from those videos?” KSAT reporter Daniela Ibarra.

“First of all, we have to look at the mindset of the officer,” LaChapelle said. “For the individual to have fled, that’s one thing right away. That’s one thing right away that you have to look at and say, you know, the officers thinking, why is this person fleeing? Are they fleeing from a crime, that they did something? So now they already have that heightened sense of awareness.”

DPS Sgt. Kenny Mata said the trooper tried to pull Navarro over near New Braunfels, but he didn’t stop.

Mata said Navarro then led the trooper on a chase, hitting speeds of 110 miles an hour.

Navarro then crashed into an SUV near 1604 and FM 78, according to Mata. DPS and witnesses said the shooting happened shortly after.

KSAT learned Navarro had a criminal history, including an active warrant for his arrest when he was shot.

“Luis was flawed and made mistakes, but he was part of our family and will be missed by many‚” said Navarros’ family in a statement.

An indictment obtained by KSAT shows Navarro was accused of pointing a gun at a family member in 2019.

“That does play into it, if the person had an active warrant for a serious crime like that because they have a higher propensity, to have violence against the officer,” said LaChapelle. “And so, you know, this officer may well have felt like something was concealed, something might have been concealed in the shirt because there are many times that that is a tactic.”

“Do you think that the officer was justified in the shooting?” asked Ibarra.

“I’m not saying that,” responded LaChapelle. “I can’t form that opinion, because from what I saw in the video, I still have questions.”

DPS declined KSAT’s request for an interview for the third day in a row.

KSAT reached out to the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office requesting to speak with Darryl Harris, the division chief of the Civil Rights Division.

The division was created in 2020 to handle cases involving shootings by officers.

In an email, spokesperson Pete Gallego said the case is still being investigated, adding that the office doesn’t comment on pending cases.

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