San Jose State on Friday, March 8, 2019, released records related to a fatal 2014 officer-involved shooting, including body-cam footage, in response to Senate Bill 1421, the state’s new police transparency law. Officers with the University Police Department were cleared in the shooting, which left 38-year-old Antonio Guzman Lopez dead.
Sgt. Mike Santos and Officer Frits Van der Hoek had responded to South Eighth and East San Salvador streets just outside the campus that day and ordered Lopez to drop the knife, but he refused to follow their commands, according to the report.
Based on reports from officers and witnesses, Lopez was “acting strangely, as though he was mentally unstable or intoxicated,” according to prosecutors.
Officer Van der Hoek used his Taser stun gun on Lopez, who was not affected by the shock, police said.
Santos shot Lopez twice in the back and one of the bullets went through his body and into a window at a nearby sorority house, where no one was injured, according to the report.
Lopez was transported to a hospital were he was later pronounced dead, the report said.
San Jose police investigated the shooting because it occurred within their jurisdiction and determined that Lopez was holding a foot-long saw blade that is similar to a jagged-edge tool used for cutting drywall.
An autopsy determined Lopez had methamphetamine in his system at the time of his death, prosecutors said.
Lopez had a criminal history that included domestic violence, resisting arrest and assaulting a police officer, according to district attorney’s officials.