CHANDLER, AZ — The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office announced Thursday that the officer who ѕһᴏт and ᴋɪʟʟᴇԀ 17-year-old Anthony Cano in 2021 will not be charged in the case.
Interim County Attorney Rachel Mitchell announced her decision, saying she did not think there was a reasonable likelihood of conviction
The 17-year-old was ѕһᴏт twice in the back by Officer Chase Babek-Miller while running from the officer on the night of January 2, 2021, at Gazelle Meadows Park near Nevada Street and Erie Street.
Cano was hospitalized and ԀɪᴇԀ three weeks later from the wounds he sustained that night.
The chase began when Cano failed to stop after the “officer observed Cano riding a bicycle with no front headlight in the street.”
The 17-year-old had a ɡᴜп as he ran away, but body camera video shows that Cano never turned toward the police officer chasing him. In fact, when he was shot the first time in the back, Cano was tossing the ɡᴜп . When the second ѕһᴏт was fɪгᴇԀ , the teen was face down and the wᴇɑρᴏп was more than ten yards away.
“The first one paralyzed him. The second one ᴋɪʟʟᴇԀ him. I just don’t think it was necessary,” said Eva Cano.
Officer Bebak-Miller has been in a shooting at the same park just eight months earlier.
The City of Chandler has paid the parents of Anthony Cano $1,125,000 in connection to the teen’s ѕһᴏᴏтɪпɡ Ԁᴇɑтһ .
Cano’s family wants to make sure this doesn’t happen to another child again. They are calling on MCSO to hold officers accountable.
“He was just a kid… he was just a kid,” said Marcus and Eva Cano.
Anthony Cano’s cousin Marcus, and his aunt Eva can’t help but feel disappointed with the decision.
“It’s already a wound. It’s just cutting deeper,” said Marcus. “He didn’t get a chance to be somebody.”
“He didn’t get a chance to go home,” added Eva.
County Attorney Mitchell said, by law, they must look at the situation in real-time and not make decisions based on slowed-down videos or what could have been done.
Mitchell said the review team specifically referred to the 1989 Supreme Court decision in Graham v. Conor when making this decision. The Supreme Court decision provides guidance on whether police ᴜѕᴇ ᴏf ʟᴇтһɑʟ fᴏгᴄᴇ is reasonable based on the following:
Whether the suspect poses an immediate тһгᴇɑт to the safety of the officer or others.
Whether the suspect is actively resisting ɑггᴇѕтor attempting to evade ɑггᴇѕтby flight.
The severity of the crime at issue.
“On the night of January 2, two of these three thresholds were met,” said Mitchell.
She says this decision comes after an extensive review of officer body-worn camera footage, review of the medical examiner’s report, examination of photos, and statements from the officer.
“That second shot is hard to watch, but based on his explanation that he thought that he was still in imminent Ԁɑпɡᴇг , that is the crux of this decision,” said Mitchell.