ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – The Orange County Sheriff’s Office released a statement Friday afternoon saying that the agency has been asked to not yet release body camera footage of a deputy-involved shooting at the Florida Mall, despite public outcry.
A deputy shot a man in the back last week, killing him, during a confrontation at the Florida Mall, according to an arrest affidavit.
Deputies were surveilling a felony suspect wanted on a warrant for possessing a firearm by a convicted felon for a gang-related shooting in July.
Deputies said three of the four of the suspects surrendered.
Salaythis Melvin, 22, ran away and toward a deputy, who got out of his unmarked vehicle and saw Melvin holding a stolen Glock handgun, records show.
The deputy drew his firearm and told Melvin to drop his gun but Melvin instead ran, according to the affidavit.
The report reads: Agent Montiel fired his firearm striking Melvin in the back believing Melvin was going to pull his gun and try to kill Agent Montiel.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting.
In a social media post, OCSO said that the FDLE has asked that the agency not release the body-worn camera footage.
According to officials, the footage is not being released to protect the integrity of the investigation.
“We are aware that there is intense public interest in this case,” the social post said. “Sheriff John Mina is committed to being open and transparent with our community.”
According to investigators, video footage will be released after the FDLE concludes its final interview, which is expected to happen next week. The family of Melvin will be allowed to view the footage prior to the public release.
“Moving forward, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office will be adopting a protocol for the release of body-worn camera footage in deputy-involved shooting cases,” OCSO said.” “This protocol will balance the interest of protecting active investigations while facilitating OCSO’s commitment to transparency.”
Melvin’s family and friends held a rally Monday to demand to know why Melvin was shot in the back.
“We want answers, we want justice,” said Marlonda Richardson, Melvin’s cousin.