On Friday, authorities in Arizona released a video showing a chaotic brawl between police and a family of Christian street performers, an incident that left one man dead in a Walmart parking lot last month.
According to police, the confrontation began when members of the Boise-based Gaver family attacked officers responding to an alleged assault in Walmart bathroom. The fight reportedly turned deadly when 21-year-old Enoch Gaver grabbed Sgt. Jeremy Daniels' gun and shot him, causing another officer to return fire. From NBC News:
The brawl broke out when eight officers from the Cottonwood Police Department responded to a call on Saturday, March 21 that a female Walmart employee had been physically assaulted when trying to enter a store restroom, according to a statement from police. When officers arrived, the suspects — identified by police as members of the Gaver family — were in the parking lot attacking a second store employee, and immediately began attacking officers who tried to break up the melee, Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman Bart Graves said.
The newly released video appears to show officers and suspects punching and kicking one another, and officers using Tasers, batons and pepper spray on several members of the Gaver family. An officer identified as Sgt. Jeremy Daniels appears to be on the ground in a struggle with a suspect over the officer's weapon. An officer identified as Officer Rick Hicks appears to shoot one man in the stomach before fatally shooting a man on top of Daniels.
"The officers did a very good job of restraining themselves,'' Cottonwood Police Chief Jody Fanning told The Arizona Republic. "I have no reason why [the Gavers] decided to fight us."
According to The Republic, the Gavers were well-known around Boise as members of Matthew 24 Now, a Christian acoustic band that would play for tips outside a local supermarket. "We won't do any events where there's gonna be illegal drugs," states the band's Facebook page. "Or any form of promiscuity."