HAYWARD (CBS SF) — The Hayward Police Department on Friday released video from officers’ body cameras related to a fatal officer-involved shooting on March 16 that left a violent robbery suspect from Oakland dead.
The department noted in the release that the video footage and additional information was being made public “so that the Hayward Police Department can remain as transparent with the community as possible,” though the investigation into the incident is ongoing.READ MORE: Gas Leak In San Francisco's Inner Richmond Prompts Shelter-In-Place, Evacuations
Video released by Hayward police can be viewed below. Warning: The video is graphic and may be disturbing to some viewers.
Police said that before the fatal March 16 incident, officers were investigating a series of violent robberies predominantly targeting elderly women as they returned to their cars after leaving a bank or an ATM.
During those robberies, the victims were physically assaulted by the suspect or suspects before they took the victims’ purses. In several cases, the the passenger side windows were smashed as the suspect took the women’s purses from inside their cars.
On March 11 at about 12 p.m., security cameras captured a robbery in a shopping center parking lot on Hesperian Boulevard. The suspect vehicle — a blue Volvo — enters the camera’s view before parking in the back of the lot. A suspect is seen exiting the Volvo before he smashes the window of a maroon SUV and robs a victim inside the SUV and flees in the Volvo.READ MORE: Bay Area, NorCal Heat Wave May Break Records; Cal ISO Extends Flex Alert Into Friday
Surveillance footage taken of the Volvo as it fled the area revealed it had a white passenger side mirror. On March 15, officers conducting extra patrol in the same shopping center where the robberies had occurred saw what appeared to be the same Volvo from the previous robbery. When officers tried to contact the occupants, the vehicle fled at a high rate of speed
The following day, Hayward Police officers Michael Miller, Christopher Suozzo and Dynaton Tran located the same blue Volvo in 0he parking lot of a Motel 6 on the 30000 block of Industrial Parkway SW. As officers approached the car and parked in front of it to detain the three occupants, the driver accelerated and rammed police vehicles multiple times.
That was the point when the officer involved shooting took place. Officers ordered the driver — later identified as 22-year-old Oakland resident Caleb Smith, to get out of vehicle. After several minutes ,he complied and medical aid was immediately administered by officers until paramedics arrived.
Smith was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.
The two other passengers in the suspect vehicle, a man and woman, were not injured and were detained. An officer was also transported to a hospital and was treated for minor injuries. A firearm was recovered inside the Volvo.
Prior to the fatal incident, there were at least 12 known robberies since December of 2020 in Hayward, and many more throughout the Bay Area. Smith is believed to be involved in at least one of these robberies. The investigation is ongoing to determine Smith’s involvement in other robberies in the area.MORE NEWS: Newsom Signs Executive Order On Workplace Pandemic, Mask Rules Following Cal/OSHA Vote
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office has been notified and is reviewing the incident. In accordance with the city of Hayward’s policy, the case will be referred to the California Office of the Attorney General.