The Kansas City cop who cried on the witness stand last week as he described shooting to death a 26-year-old man was convicted Friday on charges of involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action.
Kansas City Police Detective Eric Devalkenaere is facing up to four years in prison for the shooting death of Cameron Lamb, who was backing his truck into his garage when he was shot and killed. His sentencing date has not yet been scheduled.
Prosecutors also accused him of planting a gun in an attempt to justify the shooting.
Jackson County Judge Dale Youngs convicted the cop in a bench trial after the cop chose to forego a jury trial.
The judge said the cops had no probable cause to believe a crime had been committed and had no warrant to step on his property that day. He also said Devalkenaere needlessly escalated the situation when it was his duty to retreat, according to the Associated Press.
The incident took place on December 3, 2019 as Lamb was backing his truck into his garage after having an altercation with his girlfriend where he was chasing her in his truck as she was driving her Mustang.
Meanwhile, Lamb stopped giving chase and began heading home after receiving a call from his roommate. The cops in the helicopter advised the cops on the ground that Lamb was pulling into a residence.
Devalkenaere showed up to the scene with his partner, Troy Schwalm, and both entered the property without a warrant and in plainclothes.
Within nine seconds, Devalkenaere had shot him dead.
Photos from the crime scene show Lamb was sitting in the drivers seat of the truck with his left arm hanging outside the window.
The detective claimed that Lamb was pointing a gun at his partner but Schwalm told investigators at the time he saw no gun even though he was making direct eye contact with Lamb at the time and had full view of both hands. The left hand was on the steering wheel and the right hand was holding a cell phone.
However, a gun was later found on the ground beneath Lamb even though another cop who arrived on the scene shortly after the shooting told investigators he saw no gun on the ground when he first arrived.
A couple of bullets were also found in Lamb’s shirt pocket after his body had been transported to the morgue but crime scene investigators had already emptied his pockets at the scene and found no bullets.
Devalkenaere is the first cop in the history to be charged and convicted for a shooting death in the line of duty. Four other Kansas City cops have also been indicted for various crimes on-duty and are awaiting trial.
Read more background on the case in our article from last week. Watch the video below of Devalkenaere on the witness stand.