NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - The city's police monitor said her investigation into a fatal police shooting last month is only about one-third complete, and Susan Hutson said she still has serious questions about the death of Arties Manning III.
Hutson has been the city's police monitor for seven years, and a lot has changed.
"When I first got here, we didn't have a force investigation team, but now we do," she said.
That team is now investigating the fatal police shooting of 26-year-old Manning two weeks ago at the Carriage House apartments in New Orleans East.
"When they exited, they were confronted. They fled, there was another confrontation, and now we have another police shooting," New Orleans Police Chief Michael Harrison said the night of the shooting.
Manning's mother is devastated by the shooting that police say occurred when Manning drew a weapon on a plainclothes officer. Police said that officer was a member of a pro-active police unit called the TIGER team. They said the team was looking for two armed robbery suspects in the complex.
"We're still flushing that out in this investigation. We have not heard enough if this was a legal stop, so we have a lot more questions to ask PIB (Public Integrity Bureau) about it," said Hutson
The police monitor said shootings involving plainclothes officers can often be dangerous. In fact, the Force Science Institute reports several cases where officers have actually fired on other plainclothes officers. During a 2010 test of 920 officers at a firing range, the Institute says 65 percent of officers shot targets that resembled plainclothes officers with a badge.
"The other departments I've worked at in L.A. and Boston, they want patrol officers to make the stop," Hutson said.
Residents said they feared going on camera, but they confirmed there were a large number of officers at the complex the night Manning was shot. They also said most of them wearing uniforms. Residents said the plainclothes officers did have visible badges around their necks.
"We are actively monitoring this case," said Hutson
Though she has a lot of questions about the shooting, Hutson said in the last seven years the NOPD has dramatically reduced officer-involved shootings.
"Last year we only had eight, and the year before was 11 or 12. When I first got here it was around 20," she said. And she hopes that trend continues.
The Manning family has hired attorney Katie Schwartzman who said, 'We have real concerns about this case, and we continue to urge the police department to do a thorough, transparent investigation. The family deserves answers."
FOX 8 News has asked the NOPD for an update on the Manning investigation and requested police video of the shooting, but so far, we have not been told if we will get it.