Upsetting video shows cop breaking down in tears after fatally shooting unarmed suspect

A jury decided not to indict the officer

By Joanna Rothkopf

Published January 14, 2015 5:00PM (EST)

     (NBC News)
(NBC News)

A newly released dashcam video shows Billings, Montana Police Officer Grant Morrison breaking down after fatally shooting an unarmed man during a traffic stop last April. In the video, one can see Morrison instructing the suspect, identified as Richard Ramirez, to put his hands up, then shooting three times from outside the car. The video then shows the cop sobbing after the incident.

Regardless, a jury decided on Wednesday that Morrison was justified in his decision to shoot Ramirez, who was high on methamphetamine at the time of his death.

Talking Points Memo's Brendan James reports:

It was the second time Morrison has shot and killed a civilian in a traffic stop, according to the Billings Gazette newspaper. In February 2013 he killed James Shaw after shocking him with a stun gun, an incident which was also caught on video by a dashcam, the Gazette reported. An advisory panel decided that the cop was justified in shooting Shaw.

"I knew in that moment, which later was determined to be untrue, but I knew in that moment that he was reaching for a gun," Morrison later said of the incident. "I couldn't take that risk... I wanted to see my son grow up."

Ramirez's family plan to file a lawsuit against Morrison and the Billings Police Department.

Joanna Rothkopf

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Dashcam Grant Morrison Montana Police Richard Ramirez Shooting Video