Newly-released body cam footage of San Antonio cop, Steve Casanova, had revealed that he never identified himself as a police officer when he fired his weapon from outside the open door of 217 Roberts Street on the night of October 17, 2018. The five-year veteran officer killed an unarmed 18-year-old teen, and new dad, Charles “Chop” Roundtree.
The confrontation was prompted by a complaint made by Maria Herrera and Esteban Preciado, who were selling soup on the street. The two claimed that someone from the house punched Preciado in the face when San Antonio cops showed up after a call was made.
Officer Steve Casanova took the complaint and subsequently went to the home to investigate. Upon approaching the home, Casanova realized the door was open, he flashed a light in the home and Davante Snowden, 18, came to the door unaware that Casanova was a cop and that’s when the officer opened fire, hitting Snowden in the buttocks, the bullet went through his buttocks, hitting Charles “Chop” Roundtree in the chest and killing him. Roundtree was sitting on the sofa.
Casanova claimed he saw Snowden pull a weapon from his waistband and he then opened fire.
You can see the body cam footage below.
Experts weighed in on blatant red flags from the video.
Although Casanova never announced himself as a police officer, San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said his actions were “very professional.”
“There was nothing hostile about it,” said McManus, regarding Casanova’s unauthorized entrance to the home. “Unfortunately the reaction from the individual with the gun was something he should not have done.”
Investigative reports indicated that both Davante Snowden and Charles “Chop” Roundtree did not have a firearm at the time of the shooting.
The investigation is ongoing, and Officer Steve Casanova has been placed on administrative duty.
Roundtree’s family has filed a federal lawsuit against the San Antonio Police Department and has also demanded that the officer be fired over the murder. On Wednesday, relatives gathered outside the Bexar County District Attorney’s Office to appeal to top law enforcement agents.