Video of David Kassick being killed by police officer could be released in a matter of days, offering new details in a case that has already resulted in murder charges against Lisa Mearkle.
Kassick was killed on February 2 during an encounter with police in Pennsylvania. Mearkle attempted to pull over the 59-year-old Kassick for driving a car with expired inspection and emission tags, but the man sped away. Kassick eventually pulled over near his sister’s house and tried to run, but he was stopped by Mearkle.
Mearkle then incapacitated the man with a stun gun in her left hand, but she fired two shots into his back with a gun in her right hand. The officer claimed that Kassick refused to show his hands, and she believed he may have been pulling for a gun. It turned out he was unarmed.
Video of David Kassick’s death offers details on exactly what happened. The video, taken from the stun gun itself, shows Lisa Mearkle firing two shot just four seconds apart.
“At the time Officer Mearkle fires both rounds from her pistol, the video clearly depicts Kassick lying on the snow covered lawn with his face toward the ground,” her arrest affidavit stated. “Furthermore, at the time the rounds are fired nothing can be seen in either of Kassick’s hands, nor does he point or direct anything toward Officer Mearkle.”
The David Kassick death video has not been released to the public, but a lawyer representing the victim’s family is talking about it publicly and comparing Kassick’s murder to another high-profile case. Christopher Slusser, the Kassick family lawyer, said David’s death is reminiscent of Walter Scott, a South Carolina man shot in the back and killed by police as he ran away.
“I think it would be impossible not to see some similarities between the two, inasmuch as the manner in which both individuals are shot,” Slusser said.
There is a preliminary hearing scheduled for Monday, where a judge will determine if the David Kassick death video is enough to move forward with trial. Ed Marsico, district attorney in Dauphin County where the incident took place, said the video may end up being shown in court. Lisa Mearkle could waive her right to the hearing, and her defense team has a motion to prevent the video’s release.
[Image provided by Kassick family]