Amelia Baca, 75, was fatally shot by a Las Cruces, New Mexico, police officer. Her relatives have now hired a lawyer.
On April 16, Baca, who suffered from dementia, was killed. The officer who shot her has been put on administrative leave.
Body camera footage shows when an officer shot Baca who was holding two knives in her hands. They had first been called to the scene after a relative stated that she was threatening to kill her.
“I really need an officer, an ambulance, or someone because my mother’s getting aggressive right now. She’s trying to kill me,” her daughter stated on a 911 call.
As the first officer walked up to the door, he instructed two family members to go outside. One of the women told the officer that Baca had a mental illness and asked that they not shoot her.
After the officer commanded Baca to put the knives down, she didn’t adhere to the commands. Reportedly, Baca didn’t know English.
For close to 40 seconds, the officer, the women, and Baca were all screaming. Baca moved toward the officer. Then, the video, released by the city, is blurred the last few seconds prior to Baca being shot.
Two shots could be heard being fired.
The city of Las Cruces hasn’t named the officer who shot and killed Baca. However, reports indicate that the officer is a nine-year veteran.
American Civil Liberties Union of Mexico criticized the department for not having a crisis intervention team at the location.
“If this team had been deployed to de-escalate the situation, Baca may still be alive today and receiving the help she needed.