52ºF

Video shows Lakeland city commissioner fatally shooting alleged thief

Lakeland City Commissioner Michael Dunn.
Lakeland City Commissioner Michael Dunn.

LAKELAND, Fla. – Prosecutors are trying to determine whether a Florida city commissioner should be charged in the fatal shooting of a man he accused of shoplifting a hatchet from an Army-Navy surplus store.

Surveillance video shows the store's co-owner, Lakeland Commissioner Michael Dunn, shooting Cristobal Lopez on Oct. 3.

[PREVIOUS: Lakeland city commissioner fatally shoots customer at store over stolen hatchet]

It shows Dunn holding a gun in his right hand while trying to keep Lopez from carrying the hatchet out of the store. Dunn grabs a fistful of his shirt and Lopez is partly out the door, raising the hatchet, when Dunn fires and Lopez falls, mortally wounded.

Dunn's attorney, Rusty Franklin, told the Tampa Bay Times it was justified because Lopez was holding the hatchet.

Prosecutor Jacob Orr said Monday that keeping the video secret didn't benefit the investigation.