Family of Man Killed by Florida Police at Niece's Wedding Say Cops Shouldn't Have Been Called
The bride, a registered nurse, rushed to render aid to her uncle, who a 911 caller said was drunk and acting violently. The slain man's family is speaking out to Inside Edition.
It was a dream wedding day, until a 911 call came in that a guest was physically assaulting other guests. When cops arrived, they ended up fatally shooting the man, who turned out to be the bride's uncle.
Now, the heartbroken newlyweds and other family members are speaking out.
“I was frozen. I was shocked. It was unbelievable,” bride Janisha Paul told Inside Edition
It happened when Janisha and Gionni Paul were celebrating their nuptials at a popular venue outside Orlando. Their closest friends and relatives were there, including the bride's uncle, Daniel Knight, a dad of four.
The family says he was having a great time at the reception. His mom was also there, and he gave her a big hug.
But at 9:30 p.m., cops got a 911 call.
“I have a very irate, drunk guest. He's trying to beat people up. He's yelling. He's grabbing an older woman and shoving her. It's getting bad,” the caller said.
“Is anyone injured?” the 911 operator asked.
“Possibly, yeah. He's grabbing people's necks. It’s like an older woman. I think it's his mom,” the caller said.
Police say Knight went berserk when they tried to calm things down, and he knocked one cop unconscious. A taser fired by another officer had no effect, they say. According to the police account, when Knight attacked that officer, the cop pulled out his weapon and opened fire.
“It was just a couple of feet in front of me,” Janisha said. The bride is also a nurse and says she rushed to her uncle's aid. “I have a lot of registered nurses and respiratory therapists who were bridesmaids with me and guests who were there who rendered support.”
A photo provided by the family shows a bloody bridesmaid's dress.
Janisha insists her 39-year-old uncle was not out of control at the wedding, and the shooting was unjustified.
Knight’s mother denies he had assaulted her at the wedding. “It's so unbelievable how someone can do this,” she said.
“I just want justice, so his name is cleared and everybody can see he was an amazing father, he's an amazing person,” Knight's fiancee, Melissa Cruz, told Inside Edition.
The police chief calls what happened a tragic event and says the investigation is ongoing.
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