The Greensboro Police Department has received court approval to release the full body worn camera footage from the 10 Greensboro Police Officers who were present when Officer M.E. Hamilton fatally shot Joseph Lopez.
The shooting occurred on Nov. 20, 2021, in a shed behind the residence at 3504 Cloverdale Dr. When police arrived, Lopez was barricaded in the shed and refused to come out. Hamilton first sent his police dog in to subdue Lopez. According to reports, when Hamilton entered the shed Lopez turned toward him with a black object in his hand and Hamilton fired at Lopez, striking him one time.
According to a press release from Hamilton’s attorney, Amiel Rossabi, Lopez had been charged less than a week prior to his death with possession of firearms by a felon and assault with a deadly weapon.
On Monday, June 6, a grand jury indicted Hamilton for manslaughter and he was fired from the Greensboro Police Department.
At the Tuesday, June 7 City Council meeting, several speakers from the floor spoke about the officer-involved shooting as if they had been there, or at least as if they had seen the body worn camera videos, which have not been released.
During the meeting, City Attorney Chuck Watts read the order from North Carolina Superior Court Judge William Wood filed earlier in the day giving the GPD the legal authority to release the police body worn camera videos.
Wood’s order states, “The custodial law enforcement agency shall release to general public the following portions of the recording…ten body worn camera recordings captured by ten Greensboro Police Officers that depicts the incident resulting in the death of Mr. Lopez from the time the officers arrive at the storage shed in which Mr. Lopez was located on the property until Guilford County EMS began life saving treatment.”
The only condition or restriction on the release states, “The GPD may prepare a compilation of the recordings which must be reviewed and approved by counsel for Officer Hamilton before it is released to general public or anyone.”
So, the full footage of the 10 police officers present will be released in addition to a compilation prepared by the GPD with the approval of Hamilton’s attorney.