The Bastrop County Sheriff’s Office was forced to issue a statement admitting that a woman who was fatally shot by police on Sunday was probably unarmed. The move marks a reversal of the initial account in which an officer claimed he was forced to shoot 48-year-old Yvette Smith because she had a gun.
Smith was shot after officers were called to a house where two men—her boyfriend and his son—were allegedly engaged in an altercation that involved a gun.
According to KTBC, police initially claimed “the men disregarded commands and then Smith came to the door displaying a firearm. She was shot by Deputy Daniel Willis after also disobeying commands.” However, witnesses offered a different account, saying Smith was unarmed and did not disobey the officers.
Joe Martinez, a neighbor, told reporters, “The owner there said there are no weapons there and I believe him because they are not that type of people. There mainly calm…I mean the whole neighborhood is calm. This is the first time this has ever happened.”
Willie Thomas, the man who owned the home in which Smith was killed, echoed his sentiments. “All I can tell you is that they overreacted,” Willis explained. “She didn’t have the chance to get out the door.”
Raw Story gives more details about the incident that led to Smith’s death:
Anthony Bell, Smith’s 25-year-old son, said that he was told that there was not even a gun at the home at the time. According to Bell, Smith’s boyfriend had been arguing with his son about a gun that was at another location.
Bell argued that officers never would have reacted so quickly in an upscale neighborhood.
“If they had went to Hunters Crossing or Tahitian Village or a nicer subdivision, they wouldn’t have been so hostile,” he pointed out.
Smith’s killer, Deputy Willis was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation.