Fargo police released body cam of a deadly ambush attack which killed an officer and suspect
The North Dakota Attorney General on Thursday, Aug. 17, released police body camera video from the officer responsible for shooting and killing a gunman who ambushed Fargo police officers on July 14, neutralizing a wider community threat.
Attorney General Drew Wrigley and Fargo Police Chief David Zibolski held a news conference on Thursday to make public Officer Zach Robinson's body camera video recorded during the shooting that claimed the life of one police officer and injured two others officers and a bystander.
The video, played at Fargo City Hall, was prefaced with a warning that it was disturbing and graphic and that viewer discretion was advised. The three-minute video is digitally blurred "out of respect" in parts, but the audio was not edited, Wrigley said.
It shows the three officers who were struck by Mohamad Barakat's rapid gunfire just seconds before they were hit, and Officer Zach Robinson's immediate response, shouting "hands up" multiple times and commanding Barakat to drop the gun at least six times.
In a late July interview with The Forum, Wrigley said body camera video from Officer Jake Wallin shows Wallin unholstered his gun and nearly got a round off on the gunman, 37-year-old Mohamad Barakat, before he was shot and killed.
On Thursday, Wrigley said Wallin did, in fact, fire one shot before he was struck and killed by Barakat.
The shooting happened as the officers processed the scene of a routine traffic crash on 25th Street and Ninth Avenue South.
The injured officers, Andrew Dotas and Tyler Hawes, and a bystander, Karlee Koswick, have since been released from the hospital and are still recovering from their injuries.
On July 21, authorities revealed Barakat had been planning a much larger public attack.
They said Barakat searched online for articles about mass casualty incidents and the Downtown Street Fair, suggesting to authorities he intended to open fire on thousands of people attending the event.
His vehicle was loaded with three long rifles, four handguns, more than 1,800 .223-caliber bullets, three canisters filled with gasoline and two propane tanks filled with Tannerite, explosive materials used for target practice.
Wrigley said body camera video from the other three officers would not be released Thursday but perhaps at a later time, out of respect and sensitivity for their families.