Note: Members of the press can email the Communications Office to obtain a link to download the recordings.
ENGLEWOOD —The Attorney General’s Office today released video footage from three body-worn cameras and a Conducted Energy Device (CED), as well as audio from a 911 call, related to a fatal police-involved shooting on September 3, 2022, in Englewood, N.J. The decedent has been identified as Bernard Placide, 22, of Englewood.
The fatal shooting remains under investigation by the Office of Public Integrity and Accountability (OPIA). The recordings are being released pursuant to policies established by the Attorney General’s Office in 2019 that are designed to promote the fair, impartial, and transparent investigation of fatal police encounters. Investigators previously met with the family of Mr. Placide to provide them an opportunity to review the videos before release.
According to the preliminary investigation, uniformed officers of the Englewood Police Department responded to a residence on West Englewood Avenue in Englewood at approximately 8:29 a.m., following a 911 call referencing a domestic violence disturbance. The call involved a man with a knife who was reportedly stabbing and trying to kill individuals inside the residence.
Upon arrival, officers located one of the three stabbing victims in a bathroom. Officers subsequently located Mr. Placide in a bedroom armed with a knife. Officers issued multiple commands for him to drop the weapon. When Mr. Placide failed to comply, Officer Brian Havlicek deployed a taser. Officer Luana Sharpe discharged her firearm, fatally wounding Mr. Placide. Police and emergency medical personnel rendered first aid. Officer Sharpe was also treated for an injury to her hand from the knife.
Investigators recovered a knife near Mr. Placide. Mr. Placide was transported to Englewood Hospital and pronounced deceased at approximately 9:17 a.m. The three wounded individuals were treated and released from an area hospital.
The investigation is ongoing and no further information is being released at this time.
This investigation is being conducted pursuant to a state law enacted in January 2019 (P.L. 2019, c.1), which requires that the Attorney General’s Office conduct all investigations of a person’s death that occurs during an encounter with a law enforcement officer acting in the officer’s official capacity or while the decedent is in custody. Separately, the Independent Prosecutor Directive, which was issued in December 2019, outlines a 10-step process for conducting these investigations. The Directive establishes clear procedures governing such investigations to ensure that they are conducted in a full, impartial and transparent manner. Under both state law and the Directive, when the entire investigation is complete, the case will be presented to a grand jury, typically consisting of 16 to 23 citizens, to make the ultimate decision regarding whether criminal charges will be filed.
The Independent Prosecutor Directive is posted on the Attorney General’s website at this link: https://www.njoag.gov/independent-prosecutor/
Further information about how fatal police encounters are investigated in New Jersey under the directive is found at this link: http://www.nj.gov/oag/independent-prosecutor/