LMPD releases body cam footage of Wednesday's officer-involved shooting

LMPD releases body cam footage of Wednesday's officer-involved shooting
D'Shawn Johnson (Source: WAVE 3 News)
D'Shawn Johnson (Source: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The Louisville Metro Police Department has released body camera footage after a man was shot in the leg by a police officer Wednesday night.

First division officers responded to the Family Dollar Store on 13th and Broadway for a robbery in progress.

Shortly after officers arrived, the robbery suspect, Dominique Hardiman, 24, bolted from a rear entrance. That's when officer Michael Roberson shot him.

Hardiman was taken to the hospital, treated, and then taken into custody at Louisville Metro Department of Corrections.

The footage from Officer Roberson's body camera tells a quick tale. There were several pairs of eyes on scene Wednesday night, but the camera would be the only one to relay things exactly the way they happened.

"These cameras have limitations," LMPD Chief Steve Conrad said. "A couple of those limitations are a limited field of view, and the fact that they are attached to a police officer, which almost always makes for an unstable platform."

>> WATCH: Full video of officer-involved shooting

However, the camera is the closest and possibly the most accurate, as the device itself will serve as a witness.

"Policing is a dangerous job," Conrad said. "It often requires officers to make difficult decisions in a split second."

This time, yet again, another lightning decision weighed on an officer.

WAVE 3 News Safety and Security expert D'Shawn Johnson described it as basic fight or flight.

"You don't know what the mindset of a person is," Johnson said. "That officer does not know that person, so he can't justify what's going to happen whether that person was going to shoot him or not."

He explained the sight of a gun meant "flight."

In the footage you can hear Hardiman saying, "I wasn't going to shoot you ok?"

Hardiman's intentions proving to be retrospective. Johnson said it's because Hardiman simply moved too close, too fast.

"You don't have time to react to that because one, you have a robbery in progress," Johnson said. "Two, you have a suspect exiting the door immediately with a weapon in his hand."

It's a one-second decision, he says the officer will never forget.

"It's a traumatic incident. This is not something that happens every day," Johnson said. "This is not something the officer wants to go through."

Officer Michael Roberson is on administrative reassignment pending the results of the Public Integrity Unit's investigation into this shooting.

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