Arlington, TX — O’Shae Terry and his friend were stopped in September 2018 by Arlington police officer Julie Herlihy because the temporary tag on Terry’s vehicle had expired. Officer Bau Tran would also respond to the stop, and ten minutes later, he would shoot and kill Terry. Now, Tran is being granted qualified immunity by the Fifth Circuit Appeals Court because jumping onto a moving car and killing the driver is “reasonable.”
The incident happened on September 1, 2018 in broad daylight. Terry hadn’t gotten his new license plate yet, so he was targeted for revenue collection by officer Herlihy. When officer Tran showed up, however, he smelled marijuana and a stop for a ticket turned into a search for a plant.
According to the court’s decision:
A City of Arlington police officer pulled over O’Shae Terry and his passenger, Terrence Harmon, for driving a large SUV with an expired registration tag. The officer approached the car and asked Terry and Harmon for identification. After taking their information, the officer advised them that she smelled marijuana coming from the car and, as a result, had to search it. In the meantime, another police officer, Defendant Bau Tran, arrived on the scene and approached the car from the passenger’s side next to a curb. While the first officer went back to her patrol car to verify Terry’s and Harmon’s information, Tran waited with the two men. Tran asked them to lower the windows and shut off the vehicle’s engine, and Terry at first complied. Dashcam and bodycam videos capture what happened next.