Dallas Man Loses Eye and Some Teeth To Less Lethal Round During Protest
Brandon Saenz was looking for his friend during a protest on May 30th and was struck in the face with a wooden round.
Saenz said he was near the Dallas Public Library’s downtown branch across from City Hall where a peaceful demonstration was taking place Saturday afternoon when he saw officers and heard a “boom.” According to a photo on Twitter, Brandon was struck with a wooden round in his face. The less lethal ammunition led to Brandon losing his eye, seven teeth and a fracture to the left side of his face.
The Dallas Police Department internal policy's says less-lethal ammunition such as rubber or pepper balls “should never be used to intentionally target the head, neck, face, eyes, or spine, unless deadly force is justified." Brandon says he was looking for his friend and he turned a corner when a wall of police officers was in front of him.
“Brandon was out peacefully protesting police brutality and now he’s a victim,” Daryl Washington, Brandon's attorney said. "We can’t continue to have innocent individuals injured by police officers who have taken an oath to serve and protect.” Daryl Washington is the attorney that represented Botham Jean's family whem he was shot in his apartment in 2018 by former Dallas police officer Amber Guyger. She was convicted of murder in that case last fall and sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Saenz’s family is also being represented by attorney Jasmine Crockett, who demanded Dallas Police Chief Reneé Hall take responsibility for what happened. “We don’t need your words, I need your actions,” Crockett said. “She can actually let the community know — not behind closed doors — but in front of everybody, she can let them know, ‘I’m demanding this action of my officers. They fall under my command.’ She needs to strongly proclaim that she will not stand for this kind of violence.”
Crockett asked any individual with footage from the protest to come forward to possibly help identify who shot Saenz.“We need the help of the community,” she said. “We don’t want to go after the entire department." Daryl Washington and Jasmine Crockett say they have three other people who were injured in Dallas due to less lethal ammunition.