Arlington Police Release Body-Worn and Dashboard Camera Video of Oct 20, 2021 Critical Incident
By Tim Ciesco
Posted on October 22, 2021, October 22, 2021

The Arlington Police Department recognizes the importance of transparency and providing timely, factual information to the public when there is a critical incident involving an employee.

It is why the department is releasing body-worn and vehicle dashboard camera footage from an officer-involved shooting that occurred on October 20, 2021. To view the video, click here. Viewer discretion is advised. 

At approximately 2:20pm that day, 911 Dispatch received a call from a passerby who reported that an SUV was stopped in the middle of the roadway along Pioneer Parkway near Daniel Drive -- and that the driver appeared to be slumped over the wheel. Two APD officers responded to the call. The Arlington Fire Department was already on scene when they arrived.

One of the officers attempted to speak with the driver and instructed him multiple times to stay where he was. The driver, however, did not comply and began traveling south on Daniel Drive.

The officers got back into their patrol vehicles and attempted to pull the driver over. He stopped briefly near the intersection of Daniel Drive and Arkansas Lane, at which point one of the officers told him he was under arrest for Evading and that he should turn off his vehicle. Once again, the driver did not comply and drove away.

The officers then continued their pursuit. The driver drove to Carla Court, where the roadway dead ends into a cul-de-sac. The driver then made a U-turn and began driving in the direction of one of the officers, who had stopped, exited his vehicle, and was standing near his open door. As the vehicle moved towards him, the officer fired multiple shots at the SUV, striking the driver.

The second officer arrived about the time the shots were fired. Both officers immediately began performing life-saving measures on the driver until paramedics arrived on scene. The driver was transported to the hospital where he was later pronounced deceased from his injuries. 

Neither of the officers were injured during the incident. Both of them were placed on administrative leave, which is standard procedure for officer-involved shootings. 

Chief of Police Al Jones announced Friday, October 22 that following an administrative review of the incident, he made the decision to terminate the employment of the officer who fired his service weapon. That officer has been identified as Robert Phillips, a 7-year-veteran of the department.

"I have thoroughly reviewed all footage for this case and reviewed other relevant items, including interviews that have been conducted," said Chief Jones. "As a result of the administrative review, I have decided to terminate the employment of Officer Phillips. He has been terminated for violating APD General Order 401.04 A and B. The facts as we know them are not going to change. They are going to be the same today, tomorrow, and six months from now. During my tenure, I've strived to let APD's employees know they are part of a family and I support them 100 percent. However, I have a responsibility to uphold accountability in the agency, and I will do that."

The criminal investigation into this incident, which will determine whether any criminal offenses were committed, is ongoing. 

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