A South Florida woman is questioning why prosecutors didn’t pursue a criminal charge against the officer who shot and killed her unarmed son, considering the officer’s own department recently fired him for his actions the night of the shooting.
Flanked by religious and community leaders at a press conference Friday, Sheila McNeil criticized a decision by the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office last year not to charge Officer Reynaldo Goyos in the 2011 homicide of McNeil’s son, 28-year-old Travis McNeil.
“I feel like that was a great injustice done to myself and my family when they ruled my son's death to be justifiable,” Sheila McNeil said. “I’ve never known anyone to be shot in the back and their killing to be noted to be justifiable.”
The State Attorney’s Office last year concluded that prosecutors would not be able to disprove that Goyos feared McNeil was reaching for a weapon during a Feb. 10, 2011, traffic stop. McNeil appeared to be reaching for something, potentially cellphones that had apparently fallen from his lap, and it later was determined that McNeil was unarmed.
Wednesday, the Miami Police Department announced it fired Goyos from his job after the city’s firearm review board concluded that Goyos opened fire, even though Goyos wasn’t in imminent danger.
The review board found that McNeil was struck in his rear left-shoulder area, and said that such evidence was “inconsistent with Officer Goyos [sic] statement that he saw a black object on Mr. McNeil,” according to a reprimand letter issued against Goyos by the police department.
In the letter, the department called Goyos’ shooting “unjustified” and a violation of the department’s deadly force policy. McNeil died from being shot once, and McNeil’s front-seat passenger, Kareem Williams, suffered two gunshot wounds, police said. No weapons were found in their vehicle, police said...(click pic to watch video)