Aug 23, 2023 - News

Philadelphia police to fire officer following deadly shooting

Photo illustration of a Philadelphia police cruiser with lines radiating from it.

Photo illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios. Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Philadelphia police say the officer who fatally shot a man inside his vehicle in Kensington last week will be fired for insubordination.

Driving the news: Mark Dial, who's been an officer on the force for five years, will be suspended for 30 days with the intent to dismiss over administrative violations, police commissioner Danielle Outlaw said during a news conference Wednesday.

  • He has refused to cooperate with the department's investigation into the Aug. 14 shooting of 27-year-old Eddie Irizarry, she said.

Context: The decision comes a day after an attorney for Irizarry's family released surveillance footage that showed Dial opening fire on Irizarry within seconds of police arriving at the scene.

What they're saying: Disciplinary charges were brought against Dial over his lack of cooperation in a departmental investigation and disobeying a superior's orders, not for the fatal encounter, Outlaw said.

  • He could face more administrative charges if investigators discover more policy violations.
  • "We have nothing to hide here," Outlaw said during the news conference.

Meanwhile, prosecutors and police are conducting a separate criminal probe of the shooting.

  • Dial has not been charged criminally.

The intrigue: Dial was required to speak with internal affairs about his involvement in the shooting within 72 hours but he did not do so, officials said.

  • Police spokesperson Sgt. Eric Gripp told Axios he couldn't say whether Dial was advised by an attorney not to talk to internal affairs.

Catch up quick: Philadelphia police changed their story about the shooting after body camera footage revealed that Irizarry was seated in his vehicle, not outside of it lunging toward an officer, when he was shot.

  • Police and prosecutors have refused to publicly release the bodycam video, citing ongoing investigations.
  • Investigators are still looking into the internal source of the flawed initial information, per Outlaw.

The other side: "Officer Dial has the full support of the Fraternal Order of Police as we continue to review the facts and circumstances surrounding this tragic incident," Fortunato Perri, an attorney for the police union, tells Axios.


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