Bodycam footage shows 5 Utah police officers fatally shooting 25-year-old who initially refused to show ID at traffic stop

Police in Utah killed a 25-year-old during a traffic stop earlier this month after he refused to obey commands and an officer said he had a gun, body camera footage released Wednesday reveals.

Footage presented to reporters by Farmington Police Chief Eric Johnsen — who called the incident “a tragic ending to what started out as an everyday traffic stop” — shows five officers’ fatal shooting of Chase Allan on March 1, which occurred after an officer pulled Allan over for what they said was an illegitimate license plate.

The footage Johnsen showed reporters Wednesday was a compilation pulled from the five officers’ body cameras and the dashboard camera of the officer who initially pulled Allan over. It was also interspersed with brief written summaries of what police claimed unfolded.

The video provides a look at the fatal encounter between Allan and police officers. The day after the deadly shooting, the Farmington Police Department released a statement saying that “the driver became non-compliant with the initial officer.”

That initial announcement did not mention that the officers started shooting after one officer yelled “gun!” and that a gun was later found on the floor of Allan’s car, as the newly released footage shows.

The five officers involved have been placed on administrative leave, per department policy, while an investigation is underway by the Davis County Critical Incident Protocol Team, which is made up of a variety of investigators.

Johnsen on Wednesday conceded that the footage “is only one piece of information in the incident, and the only information available to us at the moment.”

Body camera footage shows encounter

The encounter occurred just after 3:20 p.m., when the officer pulled Allan over for a traffic stop at 145 East State Street in Farmington, a city about 17 miles north of Salt Lake City, according to the information released March 2.

The footage shows Allan pulling into a parking lot after being trailed by the police officer. The officer approaches the car and Allan “immediately asserts his right to not obey the laws of the land, at least the reason for this traffic stop,” Johnsen told reporters. Allan was in the car alone, police said.

When the officer told Allan the car was lacking registration, Allan replied he didn’t need registration and wouldn’t answer questions, and the first officer then called for backup.

Body camera footage of Chase Allan moments before he was fatally shot by police in Farmington, Utah, on March 1, 2023.Farmington Police Dept.

The footage shows that Allan kept the window mostly rolled up during the encounter and that he appeared to be filming the interaction on his phone.

The officer repeatedly requested that Allan provide identification, which he initially refused to do before providing a passport listing his name as Chase Allen. He then claimed “that is not me,” and the officer asked him if he had a fraudulent passport before ordering him out of the vehicle.

A second officer who had arrived on the scene as backup then threatened to break Allan’s window and pull him out if he did not voluntarily get out.

Allan refused to get out of the car, and warned the officers present they would “have an issue” if they proceeded as they had been.

He then transferred the phone with which he was filming the incident from his right to his left hand. He simultaneously moved his coat back to reveal a holster on his right hip, the footage shows. No gun was visible at that point on the video footage.

The initial officer who pulled Allan over then opened the door of the car. That’s when police say Allan’s hand moved towards his right hip, where his holster was. Another officer tried to remove Allan from the car as the others stood behind him, and at least one of the officers then began yelling, “gun!”

At that point, the five officers began backing away from the car and shooting into it. The officers stopped shooting when one of them repeatedly yelled, “cease fire,” the video footage shows.

The officers then removed Allan from the car. The holster on his hip was empty, and a gun was on the floorboard of the car just below the driver’s seat, the footage shows.

Officers handcuffed Allan while he was unresponsive and facedown on the pavement, according to more extensive body camera footage provided to NBC News. Officers reported a possible head wound and multiple chest wounds, according to that footage. The more extensive footage blurs Allan’s body after the shooting.

Officers have not claimed that Allan returned fire.

Emergency medical personnel provided medical aid at the scene and Allan was pronounced dead at the hospital, according to the police department. The officers involved in the incident were physically unharmed.

Family calls it a ‘brutal murder’

Allan’s family members released a statement the day after his death calling it a “brutal murder” and claiming they had been “stonewalled by police” in seeking more information about the circumstances of his death. They also said they found out about the shooting through local media coverage rather than from law enforcement directly, NBC affiliate KSL of Salt Lake City reported.

Johnsen said police had “been working diligently to collect the facts” in the aftermath of the shooting, KSL reported.

Family members described Allan as a “loving soul” who graduated from Utah State University and had been studying law the last few years, adding that he was “a patriot doing what he could to defend the people’s freedom and liberty in his community,” KSL reported.

Allan is the third person to die in a police-involved shooting in Utah so far this year, according to a database maintained by the Washington Post.

Cristian Santana contributed.

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