Kids and Bystanders Witness Officer-Involved Shooting in Sioux Falls
On Monday a traffic stop escalated into an officer-involved shooting in Sioux Falls.
According to Dakota News Now, on Monday (July 11) Sioux Falls Police were tipped off about a group of men who were violating their parole and were hanging out in a home.
At around 2:00 pm, as officers were arriving at the residence in question, a pair of men were seen driving away from the house. One of them reportedly had a revoked driver's license, the officers conducted a traffic stop, pulling over in a gas station near 6th Street and Cleveland Avenue.
A third man in the back seat, whom officers did not see previously, emerged with a shotgun in hand. Perceiving a threat of deadly force, officers fired their weapons at the car. The occupants of the front seat got out of the vehicle and laid down on the ground. The man with the shotgun left his weapon behind and ran for a nearby car wash office.
26-year-old Mario Rodriguez was unarmed when he was uncooperative with officers, refusing to leave the office. He was eventually tased and taken into custody. His shotgun may have been illegally modified into a short-barrelled shotgun, a violation of state and federal law, but charges for that are pending a determination by DCI that the firearm was illegally modified.
Officals say it was unknown how many rounds were fired in the incident but that the car did absorb most of them.
33-year-old Lavencia Badwound, the driver of the vehicle, was charged with driving with a revoked license.
Front seat passenger Elijah Wright was charged with possession of meth and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Several kids and bystanders were present at the gas station when the officers fired. Lieutenant Jon Thum said it was unknown how many rounds were fired in the incident but that the car did absorb most of them.
The incident, as are all police shootings in South Dakota, is being investigated by DCI. As is standard procedure, the officers who fired their weapons have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.