KILLEEN, Texas — Newly released information about a Killeen police officer-involved shooting provides details on why police said the officer shot a man during a traffic stop.
Killeen police said Officer Devonte Johnson pulled a car over on Feb. 18 because it had an obscured license plate.
As Johnson was speaking with the driver, Paris Lamar Hunter, 29, Johnson said Hunter tried to open the door. Johnson said he "immediately pushed the door closed."
Johnson explained the reason for the stop and said he saw marijuana remnants on both Hunter and his passenger, 23-year-old Morgan Alexandria Cleveland, according to police.
Johnson said he repeatedly told both Hunter and Cleveland to keep their hands where he could see them.
"The officer continued with multiple commands to Hunter, asking him to place his hands on the steering wheel and to turn off the vehicle," police said. "During the commands, Hunter opened the door a second time and the officer pushed the door closed. Hunter was told multiple times to place his hands on the steering wheel and the passenger was told to place her hands on the dash in front of her."
Johnson called for backup but as another officer arrived, Hunter lunged at Johnson through the opened driver's side window. Johnson stepped back and discharged his duty weapon, police said.
Hunter was hit once in the upper left shoulder. He was taken to Baylor Scott & White Health for treatment.
During treatment, medical staff at the hospital found a baggie with suspected crack cocaine wedged in between his buttocks, the press release said.
Police also found a gun, crack cocaine, marijuana and what appeared to be MDMA in the vehicle.
Cleveland was arrested for an outstanding warrant out of Harris County for prostitution, fail to identify fugitive and possession of marijuana.
Johnson has been with the department for 3 years.
The Killeen Police Department Internal Affairs Unit will conduct an administrative review and the Texas Rangers will lead the primary investigation into this incident.
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