man 12 times in raid
Autopsy report indicates that nine shots were in the back
Houston Chronicle, TUE 07/21/98, Section: A, Page: 1, By S.K. BARDWELL, Staff
Houston police who forced their way into Pedro Oregon Navarro 's apartment without a warrant shot him 12 times, including nine times in the back, an autopsy showed.
The autopsy also indicated that nine of those 12 shots had a downward trajectory, indicating they were fired from a position over Oregon , 23.
"The Houston Police Department is aware of and has received a copy of the Harris County medical examiner's report," HPD spokesman Robert Hurst said Monday.
"The department is cooperating fully with the Harris County District Attorney's Office in their investigation."
A Mexican government envoy, Erasmus Martinez, flew here from Mexico City on Monday and met with Oregon 's family at his home in the 6700 block of Atwell. He also met for more than an hour with HPD Assistant Chief Mike Thaler, who is acting chief while Chief C.O. Bradford is out of town, Hurst said.
After the meeting, Martinez expressed confidence in the investigations by HPD and the district attorney office's civil rights division, but said that his government may ask that the U.S. Justice Department look into the matter as well.
Oregon was shot to death July 12 after members of the gang task force assigned to the Southwest Patrol Division raided Oregon 's apartment. The raid reportedly was on the basis of information from a confidential informant.
Sources have said the officers arrested that informant just prior to the raid.
Bradford has said there are indications the officers violated HPD policy requiring that all informants meet certain criteria and be registered with the department.
The officers said they opened fire after Oregon pointed a pistol
at them. No drugs were found in the apartment of Oregon , who
is survived by a widow and two daughters.
The autopsy report says Oregon had a gunshot wound to the head, left hand and left shoulder and nine wounds to the back.
Other than three wounds - to the shoulder, hand and back - all the shots were noted as traveling downward through Oregon 's body, indicating they were fired from above his body.
Oregon 's family has said the officers continued shooting him after he had fallen to the floor. Bullet holes were found in the floor where Oregon fell.
"All the wounds are disturbing," said attorney Paul Nugent, hired by Oregon 's family. Nugent met Monday evening with medical examiner Dr. Joye Carter to discuss the autopsy findings.
The report said four bullets were recovered from Oregon 's body, as well as two bullet fragments. The other shots apparently traveled through his body.
Officer Lamont E. Tillery, 30, was shot in the shoulder during the melee but saved from serious injury by his bulletproof vest.
Ballistics tests determined that Tillery was shot by a fellow officer. A weapon was recovered from Oregon 's bedroom, but it is unknown whether that gun had been fired.
Relieved of duty with pay pending the outcome of investigations are Officers Tillery, David R. Barrera, 28, Pete A. Herrada, 28, David Perkins, 30, and James R. Willis, 28, and Sgt. Darrell H. Strouse, 34.
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