A 20-year-old man was shot and killed last night by Gwinnett County police after they say he pointed a gun at them and put their lives in danger. But witnesses who were with the man say that never happened.
The man, identified by his family as Antonio Hernandez, was tased and then shot "12 or 13 times" by officers. The police insist it was self-defense, Hernandez' cousin and friend say he was not a threat.
"I was right there," Hernandez's friend Rickey Garrett told WSB. "They tased him and he pulled out the prongs and he was about to put the gun down, but they shot about 12-13 times."
The shooting happened on North Alexander Street in Buford Tuesday night.
"My cousin, along with Antonio and other guys were smoking marijuana and somebody called the police and the police came and searched them," Markeda Butler said.
Police said when they began to search Hernandez, he pulled a gun and pointed it to his own head, WSB reports.
"The suspect actually pulled out the probes and pointed his handgun at the officers and three of the officers shot at the suspect and he was struck and killed," Smith said.
Hernandez' sister said her brother suffered from seizures and had brain surgery, but he was not a troublemaker.
"He's never gotten into trouble with police,"
No one else was injured in the shooting.
All three officers involved have been placed on desk duty pending the outcome of the investigation.