I do not believe Jesus Huerta committed suicide: UPDATED BELOW

Friday, January 17, 2014

Good afternoon:

On December 22nd, I wrote:

How is it possible to shoot yourself in the head while seated in the back seat of a police cruiser with your wrists cuffed behind your back after you were searched for weapons and none were found?

Chief Jose Lopez of the Durham Police Department in Durham, NC says Jesus Huerta, 17, did that after being arrested on an outstanding warrant for second-degree trespassing issued last July.

Jesus Huerta’s family still lacks a satisfactory answer to that question.

Leon Stanback, the District Attorney for Durham County, announced last week at a press conference that no one will be charged with a crime.

“After having received and reviewed the complete State Bureau of Investigation file, the chief medical examiner’s report, relevant North Carolina State Crime Laboratory reports, physical evidence, and forensic photographs, the Durham County District Attorney has found that there is not probable cause to charge a crime in Jesus Huerta’s death,” District Attorney Leon Stanback read from a statement outside the Durham County Courthouse.

“Our condolences go to the grieving family and friends of Jesus Huerta,” he continued.

We know a little more information today courtesy of Jim Wise and Jonathan Alexander of the News Observer:

(1) The weapon was a .45 caliber semiautomatic that has been traced to a pawn shop in Commerce, GA in 1991. I believe it may be a Glock, but I am not certain. Huerta was born in 1996.

(2) Huerta was searched and handcuffed with his hands behind his back before he was placed in the back seat of the police vehicle.

(3) The arresting and transporting officer was Samuel Duncan, who said that he did not find the gun during the search. He also said that he searched the back seat of his patrol vehicle for weapons and contraband before he started his shift and did not find anything. Such a search is standard operating procedure and no one else was in the back seat before Duncan placed him there.

(4) The video recorder for the back seat of the vehicle was not functioning and did not record the shooting. I do not know whether it malfunctioned, he failed to turn it on, or it recorded the shooting but was erased. As part of the standard operating procedure, he may have been required to check to see if it were functioning at the beginning of his shift.

(5) The medical examiner who conducted the autopsy reported that Huerta died from a close-range gunshot that hit him in the mouth, passed through his head and lodged in the roof of the police car in which he was sitting with his hands cuffed.

(6) Duncan heard something scraping against the plastic back seat but did not stop to investigate because they were close to headquarters. As he turned into the headquarters parking lot, he heard a loud noise, thought he was being shot at and jumped out of the car while it was still in gear. The car continued moving until it struck another vehicle, as Duncan made a “shots fired” call.

(7) When officers arrived at Duncan’s car, they found Huerta dead and the handgun in the back seat.

(8) The plastic back seat is made of hard plastic formed from a cast. The seat and seat-back are a solid unit without a gap between the seat and the seat-back or between the floor, where a suspect’s feet normally rest during transport, and the bottom of the seat. Many police departments replace the regular back seats, that are standard issue with newly purchased vehicles, with the manifestly uncomfortable hard plastic seats to prevent or make it more difficult for suspects under arrest to conceal weapons or contraband behind the seat-back or under the seat.

(9) Huerta was arrested on an outstanding warrant for criminal trespassing second degree, which is a minor misdemeanor. He probably missed a court hearing and the judge issued a warrant. The cops would not have attempted to serve him with the warrant because they are too busy to be bothered with such a minor offense. The arrest in this case was precipitated by a 911 call from Huerta’s sister. She asked for police assistance to find him because he left the house after threatening to kill himself when his mother caught him using drugs. That background information was not relayed by the dispatcher to the arresting officer, who took him into custody after he found him because of the outstanding warrant for his arrest.

I see where this is going, but I cannot imagine how this cop could have failed to find the gun. On the other hand, assuming he decided to kill Huerta for some as yet unknown reason, he certainly picked an attention-getting way to do it by shooting him in the mouth in the back seat with Huerta’s hands cuffed behind the back.

Sometimes cops do not care about drawing attention. For example, Ramos and Cicinelli beat Kelly Thomas to death recorded by audio and video.

Bottom line for me: I do not see how Huerta could have fired the gun and it’s too damn convenient that the video wasn’t working.

UPDATE: We believe the gun is not a Glock. It is a Hi Point Firearms pistol, this model. Barrel length is 4.5 inches.

This el cheapo gun was assembled in Ohio. Here is a little more about the company.

When cops decide to play dirty, they often acquire a gun like this that’s difficult to trace and carry it in a concealed manner. For example, I’ve known cops who will carry such a gun in a holster above their ankle hidden by their pant leg. They are also easy to conceal in a police vehicle. Cops refer to them as throw-down guns because they can plant them on a previously convicted felon, for example, to boost his time with a minimum mandatory on a new beef. They can also shoot and kill an unarmed suspect and throw the gun down next to the body or place it in the dead guy’s hand and claim they fired in self-defense. They can also shoot and kill the suspect with the gun and claim he committed suicide.

Other than the improbable nature of this claimed suicide and the unexplained presence of this gun in the back seat, I have no specific evidence to believe that Officer Samuel Duncan shot and killed Jesus Huerta with this gun.

I would be interested in finding out if any of Huerta’s family or friends saw him with this gun before the shooting.

I do not believe Huerta committed suicide and I will not believe it until someone can show me how he could have done it with his hands cuffed behind his back.

By a process of elimination that places Officer Samuel Duncan in the hot seat.

Except that the district attorney has announced that he will not charge him with a crime.

His decision does not inspire confidence.


This is our 856th post in 26 months. We had 543 visitors yesterday and zero donations.


25 Responses to I do not believe Jesus Huerta committed suicide: UPDATED BELOW

  1. faketony says:

    (10) Huerta was carrying a backpack contained items stolen in recent neighbor robberies.
    You are the first person I`ve seen to report on the nature of the back seat of the patrol car (kudos). What is missing is there is a full divider between the front seat and the back. An officer can`t just turn around and shoot without damaging the divider. The officer would have had to shoot Huerta from the back seat.

    The bullet grazed the front of Huerta`s jacket, struck his lip, entered his mouth, exiting the back top of his skull and lodged in the roof headliner just behind the front/back seat divider.
    Durham being a sanctuary city I am trying to learn if Huerta`s immigration status is an issue?

    Possession of a firearm by an undocumented immigrant is a Federal offense.

    If Huerta was a beneficiary of Obama`s recent Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals his chances for citizenship could diminish.
    I find it odd I can find no report of his funeral. Where in the world are Jesus Chuy Huerta`s remains?

  2. Malisha says:

    The general discomfort with the Huerta “investigation” is neither small nor quiet. Speaking of jurors who refer to “riots,” if these police don’t start figuring out the scene, there may BE some riots, and I believe they will be the result of police corruption and brutality.


    • lady2soothe says:

      Sorry, I should have put a disclaimer "GRAPHIC" before I hit “Post Comment” …. This guy wasn’t searched…

      • racerrodig says:

        Now that is an efficient police force !! Is this for real ?? And they claim to have searched him?? For what ??

        • lady2soothe says:

          From what I understand it is real, however FX nowadays are more real than really real.

          If they really did search him they evidently didn’t do a very good job, as you saw he easily pulled the gun out from the front of his waistband.

  3. stan says:

    I am shocked, simply shocked dear Herr Doctor Professor with your apparent paucity of knowledge of the magical powers that permeate all we can imagine.

    I thought everyone knew that bullets were actually the reincarnated spirits of magical widgets i.e., widgets are the progeny of gremlins, and we all know what those critters could do to a Spitfire when voicing its difference of opinion with an Bf 109, often called Me 109, in the skies over Britain.

    Now where were we, oh yes, let me scurry back to Mr. Heurta’s situation.

    And since the actual existence of these pesky widgets is sine qua non for all sorts of amazing logical dislocations, logic demands of us to accept as an article of faith that if a high velocity rifle bullet can change direction in mid-air in Kennedy’s limo in Dallas and the ‘powers that be’ of the Warren Commission accepted that absurdity as part and parcel of their obedience to the oligarchic plutocracy hiding behind the political travesty of our generously bribed and paid for public officials, then all I can offer is that it is but a short leap of faith, appalling ignorance, and abysmal stupidity to actually ‘believe’ that Mr. Heurta did all of those amazing, impossible things to himself.

    But coming full circle, it of course was the handiwork of those damn widgets, and it is really no one’s fault and it’s just bad luck for Mr. Heurta.

    Don’t you think?

  4. Malisha says:

    I do not believe Huerta committed suicide and I will not believe it until someone can show me how he could have done it with his hands cuffed behind his back.

    By a process of elimination that places Officer Samuel Duncan in the hot seat.

    Except that the district attorney has announced that he will not charge him with a crime.

    His decision does not inspire confidence.

    Except it DOES inspire confidence on the part of cops who would like to continue getting away with murder…

  5. racerrodig says:

    Let me say this again from see it 1st hand……my dad having been a cop for over 25 years. Most cops are criminals with guns and badges.

  6. shyloh says:

    Not even a 5 year old would believe this story. I can’t even believe it. Ok I must be dreaming ……… Why are cops getting by with all this crap? I agree with Boyd, it is a “Houdini trick” even I’d like to see it!

    • dianetrotter says:

      You are intelligent. You don’t qualify to be a juror.

      • Beverly says:

        I do not FOR A SECOND believe this young boy shot himself. People are so quick to just accept what they hear in the news. I do not believe the boy had a gun, nor do I believe he shot himself with his hands handcuffed behind his back. The police really covered their behinds in this case didn’t they? The cop conveniently had the camera turned off so as to not record what actually happened, and they conveniently came out of the blue claiming the boy had on gloves when you and I both know the first thing that cop would have yelled when he was getting ready to frisk that boy is TAKE THOSE GLOVES OFF!!!! This way they could put gunpowder on the gloves to make it look like the boy pulled the trigger. And they have not convinced me that the entrance and exit wound matches how the boy was laying after they claim he pulled the trigger. They also (to the grieving family’s dismay), took down the memorial for the boy without forewarning them!
        I saw on YOUTUBE how the cops lined up like Nazi Germany agents and tore down the sign at the vigil for Huerta. They looked like the aggressors to me and made Durham look REALLY BAD at Christmas time. I wish someone would get Al Sharpton down here on this case. If this boy were Black, there is NO WAY we would BELIEVE, ACCEPT, OR CO-SIGN this final report! We would continue to demand that justice be done!!! I know that the Police have a hard job, and we do need them, but I believe they are JUST WRONG in this case!

  7. Hi. The gun is not a Glock. It is a Hi Point Firearms pistol, this model. Barrel length is 4.5 inches.


    El cheapo gun assembled in Ohio. Here is a little more about the company.


    • Near as I can tell, this thing is a piece of shit.

      • stan says:

        But, but, guns are the American people’s quintessential symbol and direct agent for expressing their limitless freedom and predisposition for violence as blessed by and sanctioned under the second amendment of the Constitution.

        After all, if Dean Swift could as ‘god’s’ spokesman honestly propose that Ireland’s excess baby population should be exploited as a delicious, inexpensive source of protein for its poor (in Micronesia’s cannibalistic societies human flesh is called ‘long pork’ because it tastes like the bane of Deuteronomy), then it’s but a mere moral hop and skip to see that if ‘god’ in his omniscience gave us guns and a shitload of bullets, he wants, no let me rephrase that, he demands that we should thank him for his gift by murdering every life form that claims this mortal coil as its home.

        Res ipsa loquitur

        The moral to this story is simply this: guns are specifically designed and manufactured to kill something. And since mankind from the word go has slaughtered without mercy or conscious every human being they considered expendable and added for entertainment the slaughtering of a significant percentage of the world’s indigenous lower life forms (Who said they were lower? Oh, that right, it’s in the ‘Book’ and therefore must be true because, after all, it is the inerrant word of you know who), why stop now?

        Now who in the NRA can possibly argue with that bullet proof conclusion?

  8. Two sides to a story says:

    More corruption, more lies.

  9. Malisha says:

    Although I do not believe (either) that he committed suicide in the back seat of that cop car while cuffed, what I think happened is that he killed himself in self-defense. Yeah, that’s it!

  10. Boyd says:

    Never ever call the cops to handle kids with drug, suicide issues.

  11. Boyd says:

    Did they do a demo? take the bullets out of the gun and do a demo on TV. They handcuff your hand behind your back, now how did he shoot himself in his mouth? This Houdini trick I have to see.

    • racerrodig says:

      Exactly, the best he could do would be to shoot himself in the butt, if his wrist are flexible enough, he may be able to hit his upper back…..but I doubt it.

  12. Pat deadder says:

    Well at least his family won’t have to go through a sham trial only to have the cop found not guilty.Seems to me they can sue for carelessness on the part of the cop.It’s not much consolation for their grief but it’s obviously their only recourse.

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