On Wednesday (April 15), the Florida State Attorney’s Office announced charges for North Miami Police Officer Jonathan Aledda for the July 18, 2016, shooting of unarmed behavioral therapist Charles Kinsey.
Initial 911 calls described a “possibly suicidal” man with a “silver weapon in his hand,” and officers with the North Miami Police Department were dispatched to the scene, according to the release from the state attorney’s office.
The man detailed in the call was a resident of the Miami Achievement Center for the Developmentally Disabled, according to the release. After the resident walked out of the center, Kinsey followed behind him in “an attempt to return him from the street back into the facility,” the release states. The man was holding a silver tanker truck toy in his hand, according to the release.
Aledda fired three shots, one of which struck Kinsey in the leg. Photos after the incident showed Kinsey laying on the ground with his arms up as the man with autism sat next to him.
At 152 feet away, Aledda was “not in the position to correctly assess the situation or in a position to accurately fire,” the release states. Two other police officers “were within 20 feet of the situation” when Aledda fired.
In addition to the attempted manslaughter charge (a third-degree felony), Kinsey is being charged with culpable negligence, a first-degree misdemeanor.
The state attorney’s office said the charges are “the result of a lengthy inquiry,” which included a prosecutorial review of the police investigation, numerous police and prosecutor meetings to review case evidence, site enactments and statements from police witnesses.
Aledda has been on paid administrative since the shooting, his attorney, Robert Switkes, told ABC News. The officer said in a statement last July through the police union, before his name was released: “I took this job to save lives and help people. I did what I had to do in a split second to accomplish that and hate to hear others paint me as something I’m not.”
Watch a news report of the shooting below: