Officials in New Carlisle, Ohio released body camera footage Wednesday that shows a sheriff’s deputy shoot a newspaper photographer.
Andy Grimm was taking photos of a traffic stop Monday night when Clark County Sheriff’s Deputy Jake Shaw opened fire on him, believing Grimm’s camera equipment to be a gun.
The video starts with a traffic stop. Shaw tells the driver he was going 51 in a 35, and the driver explains that he’d been pulled over in the same spot about a month before. Shaw gets back into his squad car and radios back the driver’s information. After about a minute, he quickly gets out of his car and fires two shots at Grimm, who immediately starts yelling.
“I need people here now. I need a medic here now,” Shaw can be heard saying into his radio as he runs up to Grimm. “Andy, Andy, Andy, Andy, Andy,” Shaw says, immediately recognizing the person he’s shot.
New Carlisle is a town of about 5,000, and the deputy and the photographer know each other.
“Oh my god. Oh my god. Call my wife. Please call my wife,” Grimm says in the video. “Dude I was comin’ over to let you know.”
“Andy, I thought that was a freakin’ gun, dude,” Shaw says, before telling him he’s going to be alright. Grimm keeps telling the deputy to call his wife, as Shaw radios for an ambulance.
“Hey listen, you’re gonna be okay, bro,” Shaw says.
“Shit, that fuckin’ hurts dude,” says Grimm.
Shaw keeps telling him he’s going to be okay, as Grimm curses.
“Andy, I’m sorry brother,” he says. “Listen, dude, you pulled that out like a gun out the back of the Jeep.”
“I waved at you,” said Grimm. “I know. I know. I get it. I get it.”
“Dude, you’re gonna be okay,” Shaw says. “You’re gonna be okay, Andy, okay? You’re gonna be okay. Listen, listen, you’re gonna be okay. Breathe. You’re gonna be okay. I’ll call your wife. You’re gonna be okay, alright? You’re gonna be okay. Andy, you’re gonna be okay, alright?”
“Listen, Andy, I love ya, alright? I’m sorry brother,” Shaw says.
“It’s alright dude,” says Grimm. “It’s my fault. I got you.”
“I’m on body cam, I’ll say it right now. I did it,” Grimm says.
“Dude, I thought that was a freakin’ gun, Andy.”
“I thought you saw me wave, dude.”
“Dude, I’m sorry. Listen, you’re gonna be okay. Alright? I want you to stay with me, you’re strong.”
“I don’t want you to lose your job for this,” Grimm later says.
Shaw keeps telling him he’s going to be okay, while Grimm talks about how much it hurts. Grimm tells Shaw his camera and camera needs to go with him, and keeps talking about calling his wife. Other emergency personnel arrive, and Shaw explains that he fired two shots.
“Thank God you missed one,” says Grimm, before laughing.
Paramedics come and Shaw takes his hand off Grimm’s wound and walks away. That’s when he starts to cry. “I thought it was a fuckin’ gun, man,” he says. “Oh God, just please let him be alright. Please let him be alright. I thought it was a gun.”
He walks around as other first responders arrive, and eventually approaches other officers. “You okay?” asks an officer.
“He pulled up with the Jeep and got out with that camera. I thought it was a gun, dude. He pointed it right at me,” Shaw said.
“Sit down and relax,” the officer says. “Do not talk to anybody, okay?”
Shaw gets on the phone with somebody, and they cut their conversation short. Shaw asks another officer if Grimm is going to be okay. Another officer comes up and tells him it’s going to be okay, and Shaw starts to tear up. That’s when the other officer turns off Shaw’s body camera.
Andy’s father, Dale Grimm, who runs the New Carlisle News with his son, said he saw Clark County Sheriff Deborah Burchett not long after Andy was shot.
“She held my hand. She said, ‘You know I love Andy,’” he said.
Shaw has been placed on administrative leave. The attorney general’s Bureau of Criminal Division is investigating the shooting. In a statement, the sheriff’s office said, “Our hearts and prayers are with Mr. Grimm as he recovers and with Deputy Jake Shaw and we ask the community to keep both of them in your hearts and prayers as well.”