Almost a year after a Houston grand jury declined to indict a police officer in the shooting of Jordan Baker, demonstrators gathered at police headquarters to demand the release of video footage they say could show the unarmed African-American man’s death, the Houston Chronicle reports. Baker, 26, was shot and killed in 2014 by off-duty Houston police officer Juventino Castro. The grand jury chose not to indict Castro, citing lack of evidence and prompting protests in Houston that mirrored demonstrations elsewhere against the deaths of African-American men at the hands of police.
A police spokesman confirmed the existence of a video that was part of the evidence gathered in the investigation, but said it may or may not show Baker’s death. “What is the Houston Police Department trying to hide?” said activist Deric Muhammad. “We demand the release of the Jordan Baker video immediately!” Baker supporters have maintained that he was profiled. Castro was working as a security guard at a shopping center, and told investigators he believed Baker was “casing some of the establishments.” Castro said Baker “reacted indignantly” when approached. Castro told investigators Baker reached for his waistband and charged Castro; that’s when the officer said he feared for his life and shot Baker once in the chest.