A Maryland man newly released from being jailed on a criminal mischief charge was shot by police outside a Dallas airport after hitting his ex-girlfriend and battering her car with a traffic cone and large landscaping rocks, police say.
Shawn Nicholas Diamond, 29, of Edgewood, Maryland, was in stable condition in a hospital after the Friday incident outside the Dallas Love Field terminal, Dallas Police Chief David Brown said.
Brown said Diamond had rocks in his hands as he advanced menacingly toward an officer who had his gun drawn. He said Diamond was heard telling the officer, “You’re going to have to shoot.”
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Diamond was released on bond earlier Friday after spending the night in a county jail, police in the Dallas suburb of Carrollton said. He was arrested Thursday after causing $3,700 in damage to city-owned trees by reckless driving, Carrollton police spokeswoman Jolene DeVito said.
He traveled to the Dallas area earlier in the week and the ex-girlfriend, who is believed to be the mother of his children, was driving him to the airport so he could return to Maryland.
During the drive, Brown said, Diamond hit the woman. After arriving at the airport terminal, he said, Diamond was pulling his luggage from the woman’s car when he grabbed a traffic cone, smashed the car’s windshield with it, then began picking up large landscaping rocks nearby and hurling them through the car’s windows.
Surveillance video shows an officer intervening and aiming his gun at Diamond as he starts to advance with the rocks. The video has no sound.
Diamond darts around the officer, who shoots him.
Brown said the officer ordered Diamond to stay down. He said the officer fired several more shots when Diamond got up and began running.
Another officer is seen on the video brandishing a stun gun he apparently never fired.
The officer who shot Diamond has been removed from patrol duty pending an internal review of the shooting, Brown said.
A video posted by Instagram user (at)flashyfilms_ and credited to Bryan Armstrong also shows the commotion on the curb outside baggage claim at Dallas Love Field. The shooting can be heard in that video.
Amid the sound of nine gunshots and an officer’s shouts to “get down,” some people scramble while others stand watching before officers order them back inside. Toward the end of the video, one officer is seen pointing his gun at someone near the glass exterior of the airport.
Officials said one bullet hit an exterior glass wall and the rest hit the suspect. Dallas police Sgt. Mike Beattie, who is stationed at Love Field, said the bullet that hit the glass wall outside the airport’s baggage claim area didn’t penetrate it because of the protective film. One officer at the scene, who would not be named, said he was told that the victim “absorbed” all the other bullets.
Beattie said airport police receive specific training to be attentive to suspicious-looking travelers and that the Dallas Police Department provides “crowded-environment training” to all its officers every two years. Beattie said the officer who fired the shots is a Dallas police veteran, but he would not identify him.
Some airport operations were temporarily disrupted, but the airport remained open. Spokesman Jose Torres said some people, after hearing shots, ran through security so everyone had to be rescreened.
Security checkpoint operations were back to normal Friday afternoon, airport officials said. Flights were departing but with many delays.
Traveler Lucinda Fonseca told WFAA-TV that she and her husband were coming out of the baggage claim area when they saw police approaching the man throwing rocks and one of the officers drew a gun.
“The man was yelling at the cops, basically saying ‘shoot me shoot me, I dare you,’ something to that effect,” Fonseca said, adding she then heard gunfire.
“I crouched down on the ground,” she said. “I didn’t know where the bullets were going.”
Southwest Airlines, the dominant airline at Love Field, said in a statement that they were working with air traffic controllers nationwide to manage inbound flights. According to the flight-tracking website FlightAware, at least eight flights operated by Southwest and one by Virgin America were diverted to other airports.
Beattie said this is the first shooting in the 89-year history of Love Field, located a few miles from downtown.