LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Louisville Metro Police Department officials on Wednesday released dramatic body-camera video from three officers involved in a shootout with a robbery suspect who later died from his injuries.
Demonjhea Jordan, 21, of Jeffersonville, Indiana, died from gunshot wounds at University of Louisville Hospital after he was shot in the 500 block of 29th Street on Tuesday, Jefferson County Deputy Coroner Wayne Pryse said.
One officer in pursuit of Jordan fired multiple shots from inside his cruiser, through the windshield, before he got out of the car. After Jordan went down, another officer went down to the ground, surrounded by colleagues, wondering if he'd been hit. But Aaron Crowell, who leads LMPD's Public Integrity Unity, said none of the officers had been shot.
"Officers are trained to deal with threats with whatever tools they have," Crowell said.
LMPD Chief Steve Conrad said the confrontation with officers started around noon Tuesday after a robbery was reported at the Metro PCS store at 2600 W. Market Street.
Officers who responded put out a description of the suspect. Conrad said 1st Division officers spotted Jordan, who matched that description, walking in the 500 block of N. 29th Street, about a block from their station.
Jordan was wounded during an exchange of gunfire with the officers and died later Tuesday afternoon at the hospital.
The Clark County (IN) Sheriff's Office shared Jordan's arrest history, which includes a 2017 arrest on charges of criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon and carrying a handgun without a license. Three weeks ago, Jordan's lawyer pleaded guilty on his client's behalf, and Jordan was sentenced to one year of probation.
Tuesday's incident was the fourth officer-involved shooting this year, all in the last month. Conrad was asked about morale across the department in light of the trend.
"It's difficult to speak to the morale of the department," he said. "This is a dangerous job. We know that coming into the job. We hope and pray we don't have to use deadly force ... Officers are going to be able to use force, in this case deadly force, to protect themselves and others from death or physical injury."
Three LMPD officers and one detective were involved in the shooting. They are listed below, along with the years each began with LMPD:
+ Joshua Weyer (2014)
+ Benjamin Dean (2014)
+ Kody DeSpain (2015)
+ Joseph Fox (2013)
See the body-camera footage in the raw video above. (WARNING: Some images and language might be disturbing and offensive.)
Demonjhea Jordan's mother, Natalie Malone said she wanted to know just two things after hearing about the police news conference.
"They had to gun him down, why so many gunshots?" Malone asked. "Then on top of that you're going to handcuff him?"
Malone said she was shocked at how police took her son down. She said she knows he made bad decisions on Monday when he allegedly robbed the Metro PCS on Market St.
"Son, I love you, that was the last time I got to tell the little boy," Malone said, describing her phone conversation with him three days ago.
WAVE 3 News Safety and Security expert D'Shawn Johnson said the LMPD officers involved were following protocol.
"You fire until you neutralize the threat so there is no more threat," Johnson said. "Because the suspect has fired upon a uniformed police officer."
As for the handcuffs, Johnson said they too are mandatory.
"I've seen people who are shot several times and still have all motor functions and still be able to engage," Johnson said. "So just because someone is on the ground and they appear to be wounded, it does not mean the fight is over."
This was the third time in a month that LMPD officers shot and killed a suspect.