ARIZONA NEWS

Former Mesa officer charged with fatally shooting man to start trial

Oct 20, 2017, 4:17 AM
Philip Brailsford (Mesa Police Department Photo)...
Philip Brailsford (Mesa Police Department Photo)
(Mesa Police Department Photo)

PHOENIX — The trial for a former Mesa police officer who was charged with second-degree murder after shooting an unarmed Texas man to death last year is set to begin on Monday.

Philip “Mitch” Brailsford will be on trial for fatally shooting Daniel Shaver at the La Quinta Inn and Suites near Superstition Springs Boulevard and the US 60 in Mesa in January of last year.

The shooting occurred after Brailsford and other Mesa officers were called to the hotel after reports came in of a suspect pointing a rifle out of a room window.

The officers then surrounded the room and ordered Shaver and a female suspect to exit. The woman complied and was arrested, but Shaver allegedly made a movement toward his waistline.

At this point, Brailsford allegedly opened fire, hitting Shaver five times and killing him.

No weapons were recovered from Shaver’s body, but officers found two pellet rifles in the hotel room, which they later determined were related to his pest control job, police said.

Brailsford was charged with second-degree murder in Shaver’s death in March. Maricopa County Bill Montgomery said at the time that the “use of deadly physical force was not justified in this instance.”

According to a police report released shortly after Brailsford’s arrest, Shaver allegedly said “please don’t shoot me” while sobbing and appearing panicked before he was fatally shot.

Maricopa County prosecutors and Mesa police declined to release video of the shooting from Brailsford’s body camera, saying that releasing the video could could have affected potential jurors in the case.

Media outlets argued for the video’s release, saying it is public record. Shaver’s widow, Laney Sweet, also wanted prosecutors to let her see the video. The judge denied Sweet’s request.

Brailsford was fired from the department in March, after he was charged, for several policy violations, including unsatisfactory performance.

Other records released by Mesa police show that Brailsford was accused of using inappropriate force when he and other officers took three people into custody several months before Shaver’s death.

Brailsford also was accused of violating departmental policy by using a rifle that had profane language etched onto it.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Fall Out Boy performs at Xcel Energy Center on Dec. 4, 2017, in St Paul, Minnesota. (Photo by Adam ...
Kevin Stone

Fall Out Boy returning to Phoenix this summer for 1st time in 6 years

Fall Out Boy is returning to Phoenix for the first time in six years this summer when the pop punkers hit the road to support a new album.
11 hours ago
(NPS Photo/Neal Herbert)...
KTAR.com

Grand Canyon National Park opens self-guided river trip lottery

Grand Canyon National Park has begun accepting applications for 2024 self-guided river raft trip permits on the Colorado River.
11 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Donald Babiano)...
Griselda Zetino

Empty seats: COVID pandemic not the only reason for spike in chronic absenteeism in Arizona

The number of Arizona students missing school has skyrocketed over the last few years. The COVID pandemic isn’t the only reason.
11 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Over Easy Restaurant)...
KTAR.com

Breakfast restaurant Over Easy plans to open 3 Valley locations this year

Breakfast and brunch restaurant Over Easy announced plans to open three new locations across the Valley this year.
11 hours ago
(Surveillance footage video provided by the Glendale Police Department)...
SuElen Rivera

Glendale police seek public’s help identifying suspect in Circle K robbery

Glendale police are asking the public's help in identifying a suspect involved in a robbery in December, authorities said.
11 hours ago
Clint Hickman (Maricopa County Photo via Cronkite News)...
Kevin Stone

Maricopa County’s Clint Hickman on election threats: ‘It has to stop’

Clint Hickman, chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, said he's sick and tired of threats aimed at elections workers who are just doing their jobs.
11 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Company looking for oldest air conditioner and wants to reward homeowner with new one

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.
(Photo via MLB's Arizona Fall League / Twitter)...
Arizona Fall League

Top prospects to watch at this year’s Arizona Fall League

One of the most exciting elements of the MLB offseason is the Arizona Fall League, which began its 30th season Monday.
...
Quantum Fiber

Stream 4K and more with powerful, high-speed fiber internet

Picking which streaming services to subscribe to are difficult choices, and there is no room for internet that cannot handle increased demands.
Former Mesa officer charged with fatally shooting man to start trial