Body cam video shows officer fatally shoot man who charged at police with metal rod

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WARNING: The videos in this story show body camera and home surveillance recordings of police shooting a suspect. Many viewers may find it disturbing.

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – Authorities Wednesday released video footage of an officer fatally shooting a man who charged at police last week carrying a curtain rod during a destructive predawn rampage in a Mountain View-area neighborhood.

Authorities Wednesday released video footage of an officer fatally shooting a man who charged at them last week carrying a curtain rod in a Mountain View-area neighborhood. (San Diego Police Department)

The images, captured by officers’ body-worn cameras and a home surveillance system, show 39-year-old Jose Alfredo Castro-Gutierrez running out of a home in the 300 block of South Pardee Street on Oct. 19, then bursting out of a front gate onto a sidewalk where police were approaching.

As Castro-Gutierrez sprinted toward the officers, screaming and clutching the black metal rod, one fired a beanbag shotgun at him, another deployed an electric stun gun, and Officer Isai Castillo shot him with his service pistol, Lt. Matt Dobbs said.

Castro-Gutierrez was struck by at least one round and pronounced dead at a hospital later that morning, Dobbs said.

The events that led to the shooting began shortly before 4:30 a.m., when a woman made an emergency call to report that Castro-Gutierrez — whom she described as a houseguest — was smashing windows and other things at her family’s residence. She told dispatchers she thought he “might be on drugs,” and said his actions had prompted her 16-year-old daughter to lock herself in a room.

Soon, other 911 callers began reporting the violent outburst as well.

“The residents described the man’s behavior as paranoid and said he ripped a metal curtain rod from the window and began breaking windows and other objects in the home. … A neighbor also heard the commotion and called 911, reporting (that) it sounded like someone was being tortured,” the lieutenant said.

As patrol officers approached the residence a short time later, they were able to see Castro-Gutierrez inside through a front window, yelling and breaking things, Dobbs said. They gave him repeated directions to exit the home peacefully but got no response.

A short time later, Castro-Gutierrez ran outside and charged the officers, police said.

After an investigation of the case by the SDPD Homicide Unit and reviews by various oversight agencies, the District Attorney’s Office will determine whether Castillo, a two-year member of the San Diego Police Department, acted within the bounds of the law in using lethal force against Castro-Gutierrez.

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