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More Questions Arise As Second Police Shooting Video Is Released

A video showing a police officer pointing his gun at a man who had just recorded police shooting another man brings more controversy to the shooting.
June 06, 2011 By Carlos Miller in Miami: Local News  | 21 Comments

In the ensuing moments after Miami Beach police shot and killed Raymond Herisse in a hail of bullets on Memorial Day, one officer turned his gun on a man who had recorded the shooting.

That video, which was posted on Youtube late Monday, then goes blank.

But Narces Benoit, a 35-year-old car stereo technician from Palm Beach County, said the officer dragged him out of his car, grabbed his phone and smashed it down on the ground, destroying it.

Police then detained him for several hours at the police station, Benoit told the Miami Herald.

The only reason he was able to salvage the video was because he was able to remove the memory card from the broken phone after the cop had placed it back in his pocket and hide it in his mouth.

The video, the second citizen video to be posted on Youtube since the shooting last week, provides more insight into the shooting that left a 22-year-old man dead.

But it also raises more questions.

The obvious question after viewing this video is why did police wish to destroy evidence, which is a crime. Benoit said that police had destroyed other people’s cameras as well but nobody else has come forwarded with that claim.

However, Local 10 is reporting that police confiscated one of their cameras as well, which is illegal because the law requires them to obtain a subpoena to do this.

It was a highly stressed situation and perhaps police were thinking Benoit was holding a gun instead of a camera, but that still does not justify destroying the phone.

Benoit has retained Palm Beach County attorney Reese Harvey and will most likely file a lawsuit against the police department.

But the main questions surround Herisse, who police describe as a long-time felon who tried to run over several officers before he was shot and killed.

At first, police claimed Herisse was firing out the window, but then it took them two-and-a-half days to find the gun in his car.

And several days after that finding, Miami Beach Police Chief Carlos Noriega said it was found in the floorboard behind the driver’s seat, according to the Miami Herald.

He also said they have not determined if the gun had been shot nor did he say if spent shell casings were found inside or outside Benoit’s car.

As for why it took so long for them to find the gun, Noriega said they needed to get legal consent to search the car, but that’s a little difficult to believe considering they had to enter the car to remove Herisse’s body.

And besides, this department is not exactly known for respecting the Constitutional rights of citizens – especially on Memorial Day Weekend.

In fact, these officers acted pretty reckless in discharging their weapons at Herisse, striking four innocent bystanders in the process, including one man who still has a bullet lodged in his chest.

Benoit’s video also show’s that Herisse’s driver side was window was rolled up, which would make it impossible for him to have been shooting out of it.

The first video that was posted on Youtube of the incident was shot from an upstairs apartment and shows the scene from above.

That video, which can be seen above, shows Herisse’s Hyundai moving as gunshots are heard, then coming to a complete stop as police surround the vehicle with their guns drawn.

They then discharge a barrage of rounds into him.

However, the car was not moving before the second barrage of bullets, so it’s not like police feared for their lives because of a lurching car.

And if Herisse was, in fact, holding a gun, you would think that it wouldn’t take police two-and-a-half days to recover it.

Who was Raymond Herisse?

image
Raymond Herisse lived in a middle-class home in Boynton Beach with his mother and two sisters, one who apparently made the honor roll. (Photo by Liam Crotty)

Since he was shot to death, Boynton Beach police said he was the same man who shot a gas station clerk during an armed robbery last November.

The gas station happened to be a few blocks from Herisse’s home. It was, in fact, one of his favorite hangouts, according to a commenter on a blog operated by Miami photographer Liam Crotty, who drove up to Boynton Beach to find out more about Herisse.

image

The commenter said it was hard to believe that the gas station clerk was able to pick Herisse out from a line-up when he wasn’t able to recognize him during the actual stick-up, considering Herisse hung out there all the time.

Crotty also discovered that Herisse came from a middle-class suburban home where he lived with his Haitian mother and two sisters. Neighbors described him as a good kid who helped his mother with the bills and yard work.

But Herisse has also been arrested 13 times since 2007, mostly involving drugs, driving without a valid license and missing court dates.

However, it was only until after his death that police began tying him to violent crimes.

The second shooting

About an hour after they shot Herisse, another officer shot at another man who was believed to have been trying to run police over, but it turns out, he was only drunk. However, he survived the shooting because the officer missed.

Related Categories: Miami True Crime Stories Miami: Local News,

Carlos Miller is a featured writer at Miami Beach 411. He also operates Photography is Not a Crime, a blog about photographer rights, New Media and First Amendment issues.

See more articles by Carlos Miller.

See more articles by Carlos Miller

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21 Comments on

"More Questions Arise As Second Police Shooting Video Is Released"

Bergman says:

I’m expecting the police to “discover” evidence linking Herisse to the Kennedy assassination any day now.  Perhaps as the oft-rumored second shooter on the grassy knoll.  And maybe they can tie global warming to him somehow too…

Posted on 06/07/2011 at 12:20 PM

Christy says:

Carlos,

I know you report a lot instances where the Miami Police allegedly make mistakes and injure/kill innocent people. And that’s all we hear. Are there any court cases or lawsuit updates as to what happens afterwords?

Posted on 06/07/2011 at 1:12 PM

Christy says:

I watched the videos..the first one is hard to make heads or tails of but the second is scary. It’s as if this is not the US. Things like this are not supposed to happen here. When the cops were firing at the victim, did they know if others were in the car? Police should take safety measures for this weekend. Set up a check point and inspect people for weapons..Do precautionary things so situations like this can be avoided. I really think these cops don’t have proper training. And imagine how they must feel after a shooting that could have been avoided. They have to live with that gulit for the rest of their lives.

Posted on 06/07/2011 at 1:25 PM

Carlos Miller says:

Well, there’s the case of Adam Tavss, the cop who killed two unarmed people in less than a week a couple of years back.

http://www.miamibeach411.com/news/unarmed-tourist

He was cleared of the shootings, but then was arrested for operating a marijuana grow house at his home.

http://blogs.miaminewtimes.com/riptide/2010/05/adam_tavss_miami_beachs_killer.php

Then he was arrested for beating up his girlfriend and as far as I know, he is still behind bars.

http://miami.cbslocal.com/2011/05/09/ex-miami-beach-cop-cleared-in-shooting-arrested-again/

Funny thing is, I was criticized by local bloggers two years ago for reporting on the fact that he had a previous domestic violence arrest.

http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Officer-Who-Killed-Twice-in-Four-Days-Accused-of-Domestic-Violence-in-the-Past.html

Posted on 06/07/2011 at 1:30 PM

Jess says:

The first video is chilling after the police pull their guns on the car with the man taping them. All I can hear is the people asking “where can we go?” That must have been scary.

Like it or not, MDW in South Beach is out of control, and I am sure anyone watching those videos won’t be coming back next year.

Posted on 06/07/2011 at 2:02 PM

Stick says:

” ...police describe as a long-time felon who tried to run over several officers before he was shot and killed.” - So it was a revenge killing, not ‘self defense’. Cops are scum.

Posted on 06/07/2011 at 6:17 PM

Paul says:

Sue’em! Sue’em all!!! Every last cop who was even within a mile of the place.

And let the lawyers sort it out.

Posted on 06/08/2011 at 12:33 PM

Eric M says:

The police involved need to be thrown in jail and the city should be bankrupt by allow these thugs to continue to operate this way!

Posted on 06/08/2011 at 1:20 PM

James Solbakken says:

I’m willing to give the cops some benefit of the doubt seeing how tough their
job can be, but, how can the creepy fascist bastards get away with destroying evidence, much less destroying property, under these kinds of circumstances?
Could Amerika be more fuct? I think not.

Posted on 06/08/2011 at 6:33 PM

NoNWO says:

There is about one cop to every 300 or so citizens, right? I dunno, I just made that up. the point is - there are a hell of a lot more of us then there are pigs. There is strength in numbers people. It is our duty to stop this. They can’t shoot us all, and there’s no way they could shoot us all before we take them down and disarm them. Period.

Posted on 06/09/2011 at 9:02 AM

Javier says:

Guilt, Christy? What are you? A rube? And no….I suspect they weren’t improperly trained…..that’s exactly what they were trained for….

Posted on 06/09/2011 at 2:13 PM

Bergman says:

@James Solbakken:
Do you give even greater benefit of the doubt to tuna fishermen, firefighters and roofing installers?  Because all three of those jobs are more dangerous than police work; Police work isn’t even in the top 10 for danger.

Posted on 06/09/2011 at 10:41 PM

Debbie U. says:

Oh, this is the last straw. Florida must be run by incompetent thugs and corrupt officials who think the Constitution no more than a fancy bit of toilet paper on which to wipe their flabby hind-ends.

I’ve been keeping up on the various stories locally to where we’ve planned on vacationing this summer, and it’s not making me happy.

I will NOT put my family, my children in danger of being abused by criminals with badges. I do NOT like this at ALL. :-(

DISNEY will be getting notice of my plans to cancel the family vacation this year. I’ve already booked, but can back out.

I think we’ll go to Alaska instead.

Posted on 06/10/2011 at 7:19 PM

MC50 says:

Wow, you all don’t even know the half of it. Lets try to think outside the box for once. The videos do not show the exact circumstances of what happened before the video was recording.  Did you notice the people running in the bottom left when the car was speeding?  Cops just don’t shoot people unless they think there lives or others are in danger.  For those who rip on the cops or other law enforcement, they have to be this way to impose authority among their community.  Cops have to deal with this a lot and at times is takes a toll on them.  I mean they are human.  The frustration of clearing the scene can be cumbersome when every cop near by has no idea who shot who or who was the friends of the bad guys.  So having there weapon out and pointing it might be necessary to gain control of the area.  However, trying to destroy the phones should not of happened but again, frustration may have set in and perhaps some of those cops were the best trained.  Still, they were doing it cause they knew people who saw that video would twist and turn the event that occurred in every which way to make it entertaining and promote negativity among the cops and this incident.  Its stereotypical to say cops in crooked and unconstitutional.  What happens when your in trouble or in an accident or need emergency assistance, what is the first think everyone does? call 911.  Well let see how we operate without that option? 
Oh, regarding the legal consent to search the car, cops don’t need legal authroity to get the body out or search for weapons within reach of the accused.  Its an officer safety thing.  They need to obtain a search warrant to search the car entirely and that can take a day or two to get because the proposal cause took time to properly compile and present to a judge.

Posted on 06/11/2011 at 9:49 PM

sheesh says:

A good kid, only been arrested 13 times…

Posted on 06/12/2011 at 9:41 AM

Slobyskya Rotchikokov says:

MC50 said -
Cops just don’t shoot people unless they think there lives or others are in danger. 
HAH! I don’t know what universe he lives in but here in the USA. cops kill Marines who try to defend their families during TWAT team break-ins, they shoot children’s pets in front of them, they kill retarded men waving fluorescent light bulbs, they kill 14 year old Down’s Syndrome boys for running toward them; they beat the sh*t out of whoever they want just because they had a bad day, poor babies, or their girlfriend said ‘No”, or their team lost… if you haven’t seen videos of them slapping around teenage girls who had the audacity to question them or beating up kids for skating in the wrong place then you have’t been watching.
It seems that many of the cops just can’t get it up unless they act out their sadistic fantasies; and after they snuff some poor bastard they have a mental image to go home and whack off to.

Posted on 06/13/2011 at 4:30 PM

Timsalad says:

MC50 I will tell you what will happen if there is no 911 to call ... you will have a better chance of SURVIVING any incident, accident or emergency if you do not have to deal with the protecters and servers. Their main mantra is about officer safety but citizens involved in police contact have a much greater chance of winding up dead than the police officer.
Of course their bully boy tactics and deadly use of force are covered up by their superiors, prosecutors and judges - they are all part of the system and look after one another.

Posted on 06/14/2011 at 9:35 PM

Dedicated_Dad says:

The police are the largest street gang in America. See this link - http://www.myspace.com/video/boilingfrogs/the-largest-street-gang-in-america/54162036

Posted on 06/16/2011 at 7:43 PM

Dan @ Best Parking says:

That’s just scary, the police are losing control…of themselves. Executing suspects, drawing guns on citizen videographers, firing at drunk drivers. That entire department is a risk to citizens, it should be overhauled like what they did in NOLA. Unfortunately, this won’t be the last of these types of incidents as long as we tolerate the kind of fascistic culture that seems to be the norm in the many police departments across the country.

Posted on 06/20/2011 at 5:09 AM

elvatoloko says:

None of you will know what it’s like to be behind the badge until you are. Being the garbagemen of society is largely thankless. However, even if its a messy and stinky business, someone has to do it, so that you can go home at night, work, live, shop and worship with a degree of safety.
Mistakes are made, by all humans, law enforcement officers included and YOU included.
I wasn’t there, so I don’t know what happened, no matter how many videos of the even you have. None of you, unless you were there with an advantageous point of view and in a state of mind allowing to observe and process the information, know what happened.

Posted on 07/10/2011 at 9:45 PM

Donte says:

As a 23yr Military Veteran and 6yrs working for municipal law enforcement; I was totally shocked to witness the lack of judgment and poor tactics at best by the Miami Beach Police Department. I served 3 tours in Iraq and 1yr in Afghanistan and I never experienced those types of indiscretion even in Combat where the insurgents are launching unconventional warfare to kill our troops.

Law enforcement is authorized to use Deadly Force to save their own life and the life others when all lesser means have failed. however, they also have to take into consideration innocent bystanders and their surroundings.

A speeding car can be considered as a lethal threat but there were at least over 100 police officers on Collins Ave, each equipped with hand-held radio which they can use and activate their pre-planned response for that type of situation. Open fire on a moving car traveling on a crowded street is poor tactics at a minimum.

Once the car makes complete stops, I watched from the hotel lobby that several officers quickly approached the vehicle. Nearly all the police officers were shouting some type of commands at the driver of the vehicle which created more confusion and intensified an already tense situation.

Without any warnings, a police officer fired at the vehicle and the rest you can clearly see on the video that nearly all the officers present at that scene discharged or emptied their weapons. Totally Unacceptable, lack of command and control which resulted on several officers and civilian pedestrians wounded in the process.

Here’s what I think happen:

The initial shooting by the police officers to stop the vehicle was terrible, out of policy and poor tactics. Was it criminal per say; it will be hard to find a jury willing to convict those officers whether we think it’s right or not.
The second shooting once the vehicle made a complete stop was totally wrong. I believed one of the police officer under this very tense situation, discharged his or her weapon by accident or intentionally. In response, the rest of the police officers may believed that the shot was coming from the vehicle and they all went to a ” Spray & Pray Mode” without acquiring a clear sight picture of their intended target, without any regards to the civilian population and innocent bystanders.
Basically this operation was a fiasco and the cover up started right away once the police department realized the driver was unarmed and the possibility of video footage of the incident. It took nearly 3 days to produce a firearm that was found in the car.
That is straight B.S. Once a crime is committed; under the Exigent Circumstances Rule and Probable Cause; law enforcement doesn’t need a Search Warrant to conduct a Search. The presence of a firearm alone doesn’t constitute the Deadly Force Triangle (Capability, Opportunity and Intent). Therefore It’s extremely hard for them to justify the Killing of Raymond Herrise. Law Enforcement Officers make mistakes all the time, but taking someone life under those conditions raised several questions that will be debating at Police Forum and Academy for years to follow. The key is that Minority leaders need to ensure that Police Officials and elected officials are vicariously liable and accountable for their actions.
Dont take No for an answer, seek and demand the truth from an independent and transparent investigation. Without those meausres in place, those types of incident will take place over and over again as long we don’t demand fair and equal policing in the urban community.

The victim’s family needs to file multiple lawsuit against Every Police Officers on duty that night to include the Senior Officer present, Watch Commander, Police Chief and the Mayor. Deep pocket theory works, once the city starts loosing a lot of money, it will become fiscally irresponsible to employ those tactics that will result in a bonfire lawsuit. As a result, we will get a much better trained police department who totally understands the ramification of bad policing.

Posted on 07/31/2011 at 11:53 PM

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