Prosecutors have cleared police officers in three separate deadly shootings involving Florida motorists, including the case of a teen shot dead after driving a stolen SUV into a police car at a flea market, the Miami Herald reports. The cases are among eight fatal police-involved shootings recently cleared by the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office, which were detailed in reports obtained by the Herald. The reports’ release comes during a heightened time of scrutiny on police tactics across the U.S. that have prompted investigations, spirited rallies, some civil unrest and criminal charges against officers. “Am I disappointed that there are no charges? Yes. Am I surprised? No,” said Alyssa Carulla, the sister of 17-year-old Jason Carulla, who was shot and killed by Coral Gables police officers in 2014 after he smashed the stolen SUV into an officer's car. “He didn't get the media coverage. He didn't get rallies.”
Locally, controversy over police officers shooting at moving cars has swirled for years. Most notoriously, Miami Beach and Hialeah officers wounded bystanders and killed a motorist who barreled down a crowded South Beach street during Memorial Day 2011, nearly hitting several people. That shooting spurred Miami Beach police to restrict shooting at moving cars, a policy long in place in the city of Miami. Florida officers are rarely prosecuted for on-duty shootings because state law affords them wide latitude to use deadly force, including the ability to shoot at “fleeing felons” who presumably pose a danger to others. Last month, a Broward County grand jury indicted a deputy for manslaughter in the shooting death of Jermaine McBean, who was walking home from a pawn shop carrying an air rifle.