Fremont Police Release Video from Aug. 25 Fatal Officer-Involved Shooting

Acting chief believes the officer's response was justified and clear cut

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Fremont police on Thursday released new dashboard camera and body camera video from a fatal officer-involved shooting last month near the Southlake Mobile Home Park.

During a news conference, Fremont Acting Police Chief Sean Washington said the Aug. 25 shooting that killed a man suspected of attempted murder is still under investigation. But he believes the officer's response was justified and clear cut.

Officer Jessie Hartman, who’s been with department for nine years, was responding to the scene of the attempted murder when he saw a man matching the suspect's description crossing Automall Parkway, near the intersection with Southlake, police said.

Hartman's dash cam microphone malfunctioned so there’s no audio, but the video shows, as the officer pulls over, the suspect reaches for his white T-shirt, and a handgun falls out. The suspect appears to point something at the officer then reaches down for the handgun, falls on the ground, points the gun at the officer and appears to pull the trigger.

The officer then shoots the man several times. He was declared dead at the scene. The suspect has been identified as 22-year-old Kevin Victor Johnston of Hayward.

There was no magazine in Johnston's Glock handgun, but police believe he did fire one bullet at Hartman because they found an expended casing still in the Glock, police said. The casing should have ejected from the gun, but police believe the gun malfunctioned.

The Glock later was identified as a ghost gun, not registered to any individual.

At the time of the shooting, Johnston was wanted for a number of crimes, including carjacking and firearm possession. Police say he shot another man in the head at the Southlake Mobile Home Park. The motive was unclear, but the chief said the two men knew each other.

A neighbor's surveillance camera captured Johnston limping away from that scene. The victim is still in the hospital fighting for his life, Washington said.

Releasing the video not only complies with state law, which requires the release within 45 days, but also demonstrates a commitment to transparency, Washington said.

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