Farmington Police in Utah have released disturbing bodycam footage of a March 1 traffic stop that ended with five officers opening fire on a BMW and the shooting death of 25-year-old Chase Allan.
Allan was pulled over for having an “illegitimate” license plate on his blue BMW — a plate that featured a symbol that was unknown to the police.
(Video: ABC4) [Note: ABC4 removed “the most graphic portion (at around 2:20) of the footage provided by Farmington Police’s body cams. Sound remains.”]
Allan, the footage reveals, was non-compliant with the first officer’s request for identification and, later, a request to exit the vehicle.
The officer informs Allan that he was stopped because his vehicle lacked registration.
“So, here’s the deal man,” the officer can be heard saying. “I’m stopping you because there’s no registration on your vehicle, and I’m requesting your identification.”
“You are detained at this time,” he tells Allan, “and you are not free to leave.”
After Allan declines to provide identification, citing various codes and refusing to answer questions, the officer calls for backup.
“You can provide your identification to me and we can have a conversation about the laws you have broken or you can fail to identify to me and we can go that route, too,” the officer told the suspect. “I’m perfectly OK with either one you want to go, but the direction this encounter goes is 100 percent in your hands.”
Allan then gave to police what they said appeared to be a U.S. passport, ABC4 reports. When the officer thanked him by name, Allan can be heard saying, “That is not me,” leading to the officer asking if the passport was a fake and requesting that he get out of the car.
“No, I’m not required to,” Allan replied. “If you try to force me, then we’re going to have issues.”
Another officer tells Allan, “If you don’t step out of the car, we’re going to break the window and pull you out.”
The video then shows Allan shifting his phone from his right hand to his left as officers open the car door. Allan’s right hand appears to reach in the direction of his right hip, where his seatbelt release is located, revealing a holster and a gun.
An officer yells “Gun!” repeatedly, and the five cops open fire, killing Chase.
“The gun can later be clearly seen out of its holster on the ground near the driver’s seat,” according to ABC.
In a press conference, Farmington Police Chief Eric Johnson defended his officers’ response to Allan’s refusal to get out of his car but stopped short of saying whether he felt the deadly shooting was justified.
“That escalation of force from verbal to hands-on, in my opinion, was absolutely reasonable and appropriate,” he stated.
In Johnson’s view, the police weren’t simply reacting to someone “who just has a gun in a holster.”
“I see them deal with him professionally,” Johnson said. “An even-keeled, cool, calm, and collected temperament — and I see things go in a really tragic direction.”
The number of shots that were fired into Allan’s car or whether Allan ever returned fire remains undisclosed, pending the investigation.
Additionally, it is unclear whether the responding officers were aware of previous police encounters with Allan’s mother, Diane Killian Allan, who sued Farmington Police last September in U.S. District Court.
Though Johnson said he didn’t believe the officers knew of the lawsuit, it was brought against the department after Diane was pulled over in April 2022 for an expired vehicle registration.
Diane Allan, who is representing herself in the ongoing lawsuit, claims she is not under the jurisdiction of Farmington City, Davis County, the State of Utah, or the United States, calling herself a “sovereign citizen.”
While Chase Allan’s statements made in the bodycam video could be construed as him also considering himself a “sovereign citizen,” it is not 100% clear what Chase Allan’s beliefs were. It is currently unknown if any officers involved in Chase Allan’s shooting had any previous involvement with Diane Allan.
Meanwhile, Allan’s family says the Utah State University graduate was a “loving soul” and a “patriot.”
“He has been studying law the last few years and was a patriot doing what he could to defend the people’s freedom and liberty in his community,” the family said, according to KSLTV.
They claimed they were being “stonewalled by police” and only learned of the shooting through local media coverage.
“We found out about Chase’s death along with the entirety of our community via News Reporters and Articles written online,” they said.
“The devastating and tragic death of Chase Linde Allan quite literally hits home as his young life was taken from him on Wednesday March 1st, 2023, in the parking lot of our local Farmington City Post Office,” the family’s statement reads. “Chase was a son, brother, grandson, nephew, peer, teammate, student, and neighbor amongst many other important roles he played within our community.”
“We have learned more from media coverage about what occurred than anywhere else right now. Officers claim it was a routine traffic stop, yet the officer requested multiple other officers to the scene a couple blocks prior to the stop,” the family continues. “This resulted in the brutal murder of Chase at the hands of 5 Farmington Police officers, with them shooting him while he was still in his automobile and likely terrified for his safety.”
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