Man who filmed shooting response acquitted of obstruction

Boulder, Colorado (AP) – Dean Schiller left a Colorado supermarket after shopping last year when he heard gunshots and saw three people lying there. The part-time freelance journalist started streaming her YouTube channel before authorities arrived, so she refused to deny dozens of police orders.

She later learns that a friend who worked in the store was one of 10 people killed inside the King Soopers store in college town of Boulder. The suspect, Ahmed Al Aliwi Alisa, 23, is accused of killing customers, workers and a policeman who arrived at the store on March 22, 2021, in an attempt to stop the attack.

After Schiller’s lawyers argued that being a temporary distraction didn’t mean preventing the police from doing their jobs, jurors acquitted Schiller on Wednesday for obstructing the police, a minor offense.

In the concluding discussion, defense attorney Tiffany Drhota told jurors that the case was not about politeness towards the police, or the courage shown by the police that day, or respect for life. people killed in the shooting.

“You can mourn the victims of the King Sopers shooting and continue to find Dean Schiller not guilty,” he said.

Prosecutors said Schiller ignored 60 orders to leave the shop in an hour and a half, distracting from police efforts to save lives and protect the crime scene. Assistant District Attorney Myra Gottel said her priority was to keep broadcasting to get more viewers on her channel.

“It was a well-considered decision to get attention and he liked it,” he said during the concluding discussions of the trial that began on Tuesday.

Videos played during Schiller ‘s trial show several agents asking him to return for his own safety and that of the agents. At one point, he finds himself behind a gang of policemen who eventually circle the shop but refuse to cross the street. He also curses some officers and chases them away when he tries to enter from a different direction.

While Drota reported that Schiller was not arrested, Assistant District Attorney Ryan Day said a commander said police did not have time to do so and kept him safe while he responded to the shooting.

After the verdict, Schiller, who frequently recorded police activity in Boulder, said he felt like a weight had been lifted from his chest. He said his lawsuits made it hard for him to completely mourn his friend Denny Stong, who worked in the shop and refrained from leaving because he knew too many people there. He said he was responding to the public’s need by streaming the dismissal response.

“It wasn’t like I was making something up. It was real news and I had to show people all the time they wanted to see, “Schiller said. He has since lost Stong and chased him. His heart is not engaged in filming.

In a statement, District Attorney Michael Dougherty said police responded to “an incredibly challenging and difficult crime scene” and said his office is prosecuting people who are hindering law enforcement responses to the crisis. . . and intervene.

Schiller’s case is part of a broader legal calculation taking place in the United States of how far people can go to film police while agents work.

In July, a U.S. appeals court in Denver overseeing four Western and two Midwestern states became the seventh appeals court to rule on the people. have the right In movies, the police are protected by the First Amendment while at work. In September, a federal judge blocked the application of a new Arizona law that restricted the way the public and reporters could film police.

Charges against the man accused of the supermarket shooting have been suspended since December after a judge ruled that he was mentally unable to stand trial. Alisa is being treated at the government psychiatric hospital. In a hearing last week, Judge Ingrid Bakke said there is still great potential that could be activated in the “near future,” an opinion she shared for the first time. in March.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *