Deputy In Virginia Shoots Unarmed Man After Allegedly Mistaking Phone For Gun

[NBC Washington/Screenshot — Police shoots unarmed black man]

Isabel Nulter Contributor
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A deputy from the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Department in Virginia shot an unarmed man Wednesday after allegedly mistaking a house phone for a gun, CNN reported Saturday.

Isaiah Brown, 32, had reportedly been dropped off at his home by the same deputy approximately one hour before the shooting. Brown’s car had broken down on Route 3 at a gas station, according to News 4.

Soon after, Brown called 9-1-1 in reference to a dispute with his brother. In the call, Brown said “I’m about to kill my brother,” but responded “no” when the dispatcher asked if he had a gun on him. He also said “somebody need [sic] to come here real quick.” Brown was reportedly shot in the road while still on the phone with the dispatcher.

The deputy had been responding to a “domestic disturbance” and “discharged his service weapon,” according to a press release from the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office. Brown’s brother only heard the deputy say “hands up” one time before he heard shooting, according to News 4. In the body camera footage released, the deputy can be heard saying, “show me your hands, drop the gun, he’s got a gun to his head, drop the gun now and stop walking towards me, stop walking towards me, stop, stop.” Gunfire is then heard. Brown was found to be unarmed, according to News 4.

There was nothing to indicate that Isaiah did not comply with the orders of the dispatcher, according to a press release from the Brown family’s lawyer, David Haynes, which was obtained by News4. The family also says that Brown raised his hands (while holding the phone), and was not a threat to the deputy. (RELATED: Bodycam Footage Reveals ‘Unarmed’ Victim Of Police Shooting Was Actually Attacking Woman With A Knife)

“The deputy in question made multiple, basic policing errors and violated established protocols,” Haynes said in the statement. “The deputy was situated nearly 50 feet from Isaiah, was never threatened and should not have discharged his weapon.”

Brown was shot 10 times and is currently in intensive care, his family said, according to News 4. He is at a local hospital and is expected to survive, according to ABC 8.

The Virginia State Police are currently investigating the shooting.