Galveston, TX — According to national mortality statistics, it’s fairly easy to get killed while operating heavy equipment or fishing. But while Jeronimo Zamora Junior of Galveston, TX enjoyed working in both fields, it was police who killed him, not his occupation. And now, the family wants answers.
Zamora’s wife Carrasco called 911 because, as she told reporters, he was having some sort of panic attack. Instead of medics responding like she asked, nine Galveston County Sheriff’s deputies responded, and that’s where things took a turn for the worse.
The family said when police arrived they beat, tased, punched, kicked and used their batons on Zamora, who was beaten so badly that he was hospitalized and later died from his injuries.
According to reports, the Sheriff’s office said Zamora’s behavior was erratic, and that he was sweating profusely, combative, and began fighting with police. While dashcam footage was taken of the incident, none of the deputies were wearing body cameras.
The family’s attorney, Randall Kallinen questioned the police narrative of the incident. Kallinen wants to know why none of the officers had any physical injuries from the incident.
“They claim he was fighting with them but not one single sheriff’s deputy was injured.”
Carrasco Zamora said her day started out pleasant but ended with his death. “No family should go through this at all. That was my heart, my best friend, the love of my life. My day started off picking flowers for my husband,” said Carrasco.
Showing pictures of her husband’s smashed in face, she noted he had a broken nose. Zamora’s breathing mask also seems to be filled with blood in the pictures, indicating the internal injuries sustained in the brutal attack.
Zamora’s brother, Juan Salinas said the siblings had plans to celebrate his birthday. However, now, funeral preparations are the only activities of the day.
“He had a future and they took it from him. Tomorrow is my birthday and we had plans. Now I have to bury my brother on my birthday,” Salinas said as he choked back the tears.
Zamora’s death is one of the latest officer-involved killings. As The Free Thought Project has recently reported, more people have reportedly been killed by police since 9/11/01 than soldiers killed in the subsequent wars, averaging over 1000 per year.
And while the policing profession is a dangerous one, it’s more dangerous to be a heavy equipment operator or a fisherman than it is to be an officer. Zamora’s family is surely wishing he’d been working on the day of his death rather than suffering from a panic attack. Maybe then he’d still be alive.
His death also serves to illustrate the need to further train officers to deal with the mentally ill, and those suffering from emotional crises.
As TFTP has advocated, the profession of being a police officer is one of the easiest professions in which to be certified, requiring only a summer’s training in a police academy. By contrast, nurses require at least two years of training, and teachers four, yet neither profession gives its graduates a badge and a gun along with the full authority of the law, and justification to use deadly force.
For their part, the Galveston County Sheriff’s department is conducting an internal investigation. For the moment, no charges have been filed against the officers. Yet, if Zamora’s neighbors had taken it upon themselves to conduct themselves in the same manner as the officers, no doubt murder charges would be filed against everyone involved.
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