Family seeks justice against HPD for wrongful shooting

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

HOUSTON, TX – In 2012, double amputee Brian Claunch was shot and killed by a Houston police officer after officers responded to his home for a disturbance call. Houston Police Department says they opened fire because officers thought Claunch was waving something shiny, which turned out to be an ink pen. Now newly released autopsy reports show Claunch had no drugs or alcohol in his system either.

It’s a tragic story that the Lara family relates to. Olga Lara’s brother, Rufino was also fatally shot by an HPD officer on July 9, 2012. Lara’s autopsy report shows he was holding a can of beer when the officer opened fire. That’s why Lara’s family, along with concerned community members got together. They want these police shootings and investigations looked at more closely. They want the Department of Justice to investigate.

Even though Rufino’s sister Olga speaks Spanish, her message was loud and clear.

“She’s asking for justice. She feels her brother was unjustly killed and for just holding a beer can in his hand. She attributes that to the lack of training to HPD,” said Augustin Pinedo with the Greater Houston Coalition for Justice.

For now, HPD hasn’t responded to either case. But no matter how much justice Olga’s family or others might get, unfortunately there’s one outcome they’ll never be able to change.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.