NEW ORLEANS — New Orleans Police released new body-cam footage of the moment officers opened fire on a drunk man in the French Quarter.
The video shows the suspect, 25-year-old Austin Bentel, pulling a weapon out of his waistband and aiming it at a police officer inside a marked unit before squeezing the trigger. Four officers then opened fire, shooting 15 bullets Bentel and striking him in the torso multiple times.
Bentel is still in the hospital, he is alert and expected to recover according to NOPD Chief Shaun Ferguson.
No officers were hurt during the shooting. Investigators later determined that Bentel’s gun was not loaded.
Police were called to the area around 7:26 a.m. on Jan. 25 by multiple people reporting that an intoxicated man was pointing a gun randomly at people in the area. Ferguson also said that people flagged down nearby officers to handle the situation.
Investigators have determined that Bentel had been drinking for several hours before the confrontation with police. They have not determined his BAC.
“As shown in the video, officers had little time to react other than to defend themselves against the aggressive actions of this perpetrator,” Ferguson said.
All four officers have been reassigned to administrative duties while the investigation is ongoing.