David Dixon told investigators he watched the victims, Dominique Williams and James Johnson, breaking into an automobile
An off-duty Pentagon Police officer who allegedly shot two suspected thieves Wednesday at Maryland has been charged with murder, in accordance with neighborhood authorities, and he could face charges in connection with a different off-duty incident from last year.
In addition to second-degree murder and reckless endangerment charges, he also faces an attempted murder charge for allegedly shooting up the getaway car driven by a third person, 36-year-old Michael Thomas.
Takoma Park Police Chief Antonio DeVaul said during a news conference that although evidence indicated the victims were indeed breaking into cars, the correct response would have been to report the incident to local police.
"We absolutely encourage people to not take action if they observe criminal activity," he said. "Be a fantastic witness, call us, but don't take action. We want our citizens to be our eyes and ears, but not to intercede themselves"
Takoma Park police said they don't plan to charge Thomas, the driver, with any crimes.
"You can't shoot people for property offenses," Montgomery County Executive March Elrich said during a news conference Thursday, according to the Washington Post. "You can not shoot them. That is just flat-out true. The idea that he drew his gun as opposed to select his telephone and call the local police -- this shouldn't have occurred."
Elrich also said Dixon, who worked for the Pentagon Force Protection Agency since 2019 and had been a federal officer since 2009,"had no jurisdiction in Montgomery County."
"We're deeply saddened about the horrible incident that occurred on Wednesday morning that caused the arrest of Pentagon Police Officer David Dixon now," PFPA Acting Director Dr. Daniel P. Walsh said in a statement Friday. "Our hearts go out to the relatives of the victims and the Takoma Park community as they try to deal with this catastrophe. We acknowledge that each person is innocent until proven guilty. Understanding the seriousness of the problem and their duties, we are conducting a stand-down together with our officers to make certain they have a complete comprehension of their off duty duties, and review our use of force policy and jurisdictional factors"
He added that Dixon has been placed on administrative leave pending the results of an investigation.
Dixon was reportedly on his way to work when he noticed two men whom he stated he believed were trying to break into cars.
He engaged against the suspects"who didn't follow his leadership," Takoma Park Police said. The suspects tried to flee in a vehicle where time Dixon discharged his service weapon. Shortly after the episode, the two suspects involved arrived at the hospital with gunshot wounds.
It's not the only off-duty legal problem Dixon has seen himself in Friday.
Authorities said they will shortly be filing fees in connection with a May 2020 episode after receiving new proof.
Dixon at the time had used pepper-spray on a homeless girl who he said attacked him in the lobby of the apartment complex. Police decided she had been going through a mental health crisis and took her into a hospital without any charges were filed.
But authorities said movie given to them Friday showed Dixon at one stage had threatened her with a shotgun.
Neither he nor the woman had said anything about that detail to responding officers in the time, police said, and he'd allegedly put it back in his flat until they had arrived.
However, the lobby surveillance video seems to show him sporting flip-flops and shorts, aiming the gun at her and forcing her from the building.