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Alameda Police Release Body Camera Video Of Mario Gonzalez’s Death

This image, from the released body camera footage, shows Mario Gonzalez in the moments before the police forced him to the ground.
Alameda Police Department Via YouTube Screenshot
This image, from the released body camera footage, shows Mario Gonzalez in the moments before the police forced him to the ground.

The City of Alameda has released two 911 calls and body camera footage related to the death of 26 year-old, Mario Gonzalez on April 19th.

The video was uploaded to YouTube by the City of Alameda. It includes two 911 calls and footage from two police body cameras. It was made public after the family was given access to view it on Tuesday.

In the recordings, two 911 callers report that a Hispanic man, later identified as Mario Gonzalez, is standing near their property. One reports that Gonzalez is speaking incoherently and the other says that he appears to be removing the security tags from two bottles of alcohol.

Body camera footage shows that when police arrive on the scene, Gonzalez is standing near a tree in a small park across from the South Shore shopping mall. Gonzalez responds to officers questions calmly but incoherently. The police and Gonzalez talk for a few minutes, and then the officers ask for his ID. When he doesn’t provide it, the officers approach Gonzalez and pull his arms behind his back. The officers force him to the ground and pin him down as he struggles, until he becomes unresponsive. According to the police, Gonzalez was declared dead at a hospital later that day.

Three police officers involved in the death have been placed on administrative leave. Gonzalez’s family has hired a civil rights attorney and is calling for an independent autopsy and investigation into the Alameda Police Department’s policies, training and the supervision of the officers involved. The City of Alameda, the County Sheriff and District Attorney’s Office are all conducting independent investigations.

Annelise was born and raised in the East Bay and has a background in oral history and urban studies. For the last four and half years, she's worked as a criminal defense investigator at a public defenders office in the Bronx, New York and at an appellate defenders office in the Bay Area. As an investigator, she frequently interviews people involved in different parts of the criminal punishment system. Through her work, she has become passionate about the power of personal narratives and compelling stories to increase cross-cultural understanding and initate change.