Video Shows Teen Was Following Orders When She was Shot by San Bernardino Deputies

A California teen who was shot and killed by San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies last year appears to have been following officers’ orders when she was killed, according to newly released video and audio obtained by journalists through the California Public Records Act. That directly contradicts previous claims made by San Bernardino County Sheriff Shannon Dicus.

Savannah Graziano, 15, was abducted in September by her father Anthony Graziano after he shot and killed her mother. The kidnapping led to an Amber Alert. Acting on a tip, San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies located the vehicle belonging to her father, Anthony Graziano, a day later. He was driving near the neighborhood of Lenwood outside Barstow.

When deputies tried to stop Graziano’s truck, he fled and began shooting out of the window with a semiautomatic weapon. The pursuit was halted once he hit a steep embankment in the town of Hesperia.

At the time, Sheriff Dicus said Savannah was dressed in “tactical gear” and appeared to rush at deputies as she exited the vehicle. The video does not show her running, but instead cautiously approaching from a crouched position. Furthermore, audio reveals Savannah was told to approach by an officer. “Come here,” he instructed. “Come to me… walk, walk, walk.”

The sheriff’s department now says Savannah was shot by deputies who were stationed at a different angle and did not realize she was being summoned.

“The department did not provide the names of deputies involved in the shooting but said they were at a distance and on a higher elevation than where the truck ultimately stopped,” according to the Los Angeles Times. “Those deputies shot at her because they saw a person get out of the truck and walk toward the nearest deputy, unaware he was calling to her, according to authorities.”

The deputy who had called to Savannah can be heard telling his fellow officers to stop shooting her. It was too late. The California Department of Justice is currently investigating Savannah’s death.

The video’s release comes just weeks after San Bernardino County deputies shot and killed a 15-year-old autistic boy outside his Apple Valley home. Ryan Gainer was holding a gardening tool in his hand and running toward officers when deputies fired. The Gainer family has filed a wrongful death claim against the county.


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