Questions continue to surround Austin's latest police shooting - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Questions continue to surround Austin's latest police shooting

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The family of a man who was shot and killed last week during a struggle with an Austin police detective has hired a high-profile Austin attorney to help them navigate future legal issues. Attorney Adam Lowey joins a team that already includes the local NAACP chapter.

Meanwhile as the family of Larry Jackson prepares for his funeral, this weekend, Internal Affairs investigators are still waiting to talk to the detective who was involved in the deadly confrontation.

Under the bridge the spans Shoal Creek at 34th Street is a place to can escape the summer heat, and even view some urban art. But the spray paint on the sidewalk has nothing to do with artistic expression. The marks trace the confrontation that claimed the life of Larry Jackson Friday afternoon.

"The family is devastated," said NAACP president Nelson Linder.

The mother of Jackson has been in contact with Linder. He is also trying to help Jackson's family understand what happened late Friday afternoon.

"This is a guy who is trying to survive, who over the years has made some mistakes.

The father of three, according to Linder, was on hard times but not a bad man.

"The family wants to know, number one given that no crime was committed, even with the speculation he was trying to do something, why does he wind up being chased, then wind up being shot," said Linder.

APD investigators have said that Jackson went to the bank to commit fraud.

"Part of the ongoing investigation will focus on whether his weapon discharged intentionally of accidentally," said APD Assistant Chief Brian Manley during a Monday news briefing.

After Jackson left, Detective Charles Kleinert, who was investigating the bank robbery went after Jackson. At one point Kleinert hopped a ride with a passing motorist. Recent news reports have suggested commandeering the car was like a scene from a Hollywood movie. Following a film script is certainly not following department policy, which is why Linder is concern about a procedural disconnect.

"Clearly that message is not getting across because what this detective did was very dangerous for the public, for himself and the subject, it's a disaster, so the question is, why are the policies not being embraced if they are in fact policies, simple issue, they are not being enforced. They are not being enforced and therefore in these officers' minds they are almost worthless."

This possible disconnect runs counter to Detective Kleinert's personnel file. The paperwork describes him is a model employee who has received high marks on performance reviews and is considered to be a mentor for younger officers.

While the review process is expected to move slowly, City Councilman Mike Martinez is upset over how he and other council members were not immediately notified about the shooting.

"Typically we receive official notification from the City Manager's office on major incidents in this case that didn't happen, and I finally reached out to the city manager myself and ask for a time line on when we were going to be briefed on this incident," said Martinez.

According to the Martinez, an apology was made.

They've admitted the communications broke down and that the rest of the council was not informed and given an update on the incident."

While Martinez is worried about the communications breakdown, he is much more concerned about the shooting and if it is an indication that written APD policy is not being followed.

"That's always a concern you put policies in places as safe guards and protocols. Yes I share concerns that certain protocols may not have been followed in this incident."

The day of the shooting - Detective Charles Kleinert provided investigators with a description of what he said happened. Later this week he is expected to go over that scene again with APD Internal Affairs. There are two different investigations underway in this case. One is focusing just on the shooting itself and if a crime was committed. The other investigation is the Internal Affairs review. That will look at policy issues before, during and after the shooting. Because of labor agreements any statement made by the detective during the internal affairs interview cannot be used in the criminal investigation.

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