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Nov. 14, 2009 — Miami

Officers Omar Ayala and George Diaz were in their patrol car when they spotted Corey McNeal walking on the street.

They stopped and questioned him. It was believed that Ayala was patting down McNeal, 38, when he began to resist. At some point, both officers felt compelled to fire at McNeal, hitting him 27 times.

When other officers arrived, McNeal was found with a box cutter near his right hand and a wad of cash in the other, as though he had been emptying his pockets. McNeal's DNA was found on the box cutter. Read more

Investigators believe that McNeal knocked Ayala to the ground and was probably threatening the officer with the box cutter. Some of McNeal's wounds were from bullets fired upward.

The state attorney's office said they would not prosecute the two officers, but because neither would give an official account of what happened, which is within their rights and increasingly common, they could not rule the shooting justified.

Why Ayala and Diaz originally stopped McNeal is not known.

McNeal's family filed a wrongful death suit that was voluntarily dropped. In it they claimed McNeal was shot in the neck, back, chest, side, arms and legs. McNeal's autopsy revealed cocaine in his system, and he also was known to take medication for seizures, which began after he was shot in the head.

This was the 117th police shooting in Florida in 2009.

One day earlier, one officer shot one person in Key Biscayne .

Five days later, two officers shot one person in Lake Worth .

5 ways this case compares to others

  1. Officer Diaz was involved in two other shootings from 2009 to 2014. Only 10 officers were involved in more than two shootings in that time period.
  2. McNeal was among the 7 percent of people who appeared to be on drugs before being shot.
  3. McNeal was armed with a blade/stabbing implement. Only 80 other people were armed the same way.
  4. McNeal were shot after resisting arrest. A total of 114 people were shot while resisting arrest.
  5. A civil lawsuit was filed in response to McNeal's shooting. Ninety other cases led to lawsuits.

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