By RASHAD ROLLE
Tribune Staff Reporter
A JURY unanimously found yesterday that the 2014 police-involved killing of Andrew Stubbs, 35, was justified.
Officer Kevin Deveaux, who shot Stubbs, was represented by attorney Kelsie Melvin Munroe, but Stubbs’ family did not attend the hearings and no lawyer was present to argue for an alternative view of what happened. Stubbs’ family was contacted but when no one showed up, an application was granted to proceed in their absence.
Stubbs was killed by a single gunshot to his head. The bullet travelled from the left side of his scalp, across his frontal temporal lobe to the right side of his head where it exited.
During the inquest, Officer Rovan Damian Carey testified that Stubbs was escorted from the Ira Storr Backyard Restaurant because he was smoking a joint against establishment rules. Officer Carey said the man became disorderly and even more unruly when taken outside.
Officer Carey said after Stubbs left, he and several other officers stood around outside talking when, 20 minutes later, he heard someone in the group shout “watch out.” That was when he saw a man with an object that appeared to be a gun, he said. He testified that although Officer Deveaux shouted “police” and demanded the suspect to drop the object, he soon heard about five or six gunshots.
Another witness, George Beneby, testified that from his house he saw a man gesticulating. The man, he said, eventually left the area. About 20 minutes later, Mr Beneby said he heard gunshots then saw a man’s dead body in his car’s driveway.
“I looked out and saw a short person wearing the same clothes as the gesticulating man,” he said. “I went outside and I saw the gentleman in a pool of blood and with a gray and black handgun on the side of him. I called the police and told them what I saw.”
Stubbs’ inquest is at least the 19th inquiry to end since January 2018, part of a major boost in the speed at which inquests into police-involved killings are addressed. In that time, there have been three unlawful killing rulings.
Stubbs’ inquest was held before Coroner Jeanine Weech Gomez. Attorney Anishka Missick marshaled the case.