Protests over deadly Grapevine officer-involved shooting get heated

There are several new developments in the recent deadly police shooting involving a Grapevine officer.

Family members and supporters of the unarmed man who was shot and killed, 31-year-old Ruben Garcia-Villalpando, converged on Grapevine City Hall on Tuesday night as the city prepared for a possible lawsuit, and things got heated.

Additionally, FOX 4 has learned that Garcia-Villalpando was arrested for driving while intoxicated less than three months ago, with a blood alcohol content above the legal limit.

Tuesday night's protestors packed Grapevine City Hall's chamber and clashed with police supporters. The protestors chanted things like "No justice, no peace."

With Garcia-Villalpando's widow and children seated in the front row at the chamber, a group calling itself Next Generation Action Network demanded that Grapevine fire Officer Robert Clark and that the Tarrant County District Attorney prosecute him.

Garcia-Villalpando was shot and killed Friday, Feb. 20 at about 6:30 p.m.

Grapevine Police Officer Robert Clark tried to pull over Garcia-Villalpando for a traffic violation. There was a short chase that ended on a Hwy. 121 service road in Euless.

One passing motorist recorded cell phone video before the shooting that appears to show Officer Clark with his weapon drawn and Garcia-Villalpando standing near the trunk of his car with his hands on his head.

Grapevine police say while Garcia-Villalpando did have his hands on his head, he refused to comply with Officer Clark's demand to halt and kept advancing on him.

Garcia-Villalpando was shot twice outside the view of the dash camera.

Euless police are conducting the criminal investigation. They have now interviewed 24 people who claimed to see part of what happened along the busy highway, though no one claims to have seen the actual shooting.

Euless police say results of the autopsy are not yet available, including information about Garcia-Villalpando's blood tests and whether he was intoxicated.

Garcia-Villalpando's family first insisted to FOX 4 that he had never been in trouble with the law before, but public records show he had a pending DWI case.

Garcia-Villapando, an illegal immigrant, was arrested in December by Lewisville police and charged with drunk driving.

The arrest affidavit says he was pulled over for speeding -- going 78 in a 60 -- and he took two breathalyzer tests, blowing a .29 and a .307, which is more than three times the legal limit.

Before Tuesday night's meeting, Grapevine city officials released a letter to residents asking that they "withhold judgment until the investigation is complete." It also said "…dash cam video of this incident which we believe will answer many questions and correct some misconceptions…"

"I don't think there's any underlying issues here," said Grapevine Mayor William D. Tate. "We have a Hispanic police chief…"

Tate says Grapevine has a longstanding good relationship with its Hispanic community.

"We have to be patient, we have to let that run its course and believe in the system that it will be fair and tell us what really happened on that night," said Tate.


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