National News from ABC

Officer speaks out after grand jury clears him in shooting of 11-year-old

amphotora/Getty Images

(INDIANOLA, Miss.) — Indianola Police Sgt. Greg Capers is speaking out in an exclusive interview with “GMA3” co-anchor DeMarco Morgan after a grand jury decided not to indict him in the shooting of an unarmed 11-year-old boy inside his Mississippi home.

“People have their own opinion, and unless they’re in our shoes, you never know exactly what you may run into or encounter on a day’s time, within your 12-hour schedules,” Capers said when asked what he thinks about people who believe he acted poorly during the incident.

He continued, “You just never know what you may run into. Spur of the moment, it’s a split decision that has to be made.”

Capers said he has shed many tears over the incident, and thinks about the boy, Aderrien Murry, “all the time.”

“I hate it that it happened,” said Capers. “It definitely wasn’t intentional. I hate that it happened because even I love kids.”

Michael Carr, an attorney with the Police Benevolent Association representing Capers, told ABC News that his client is “truly sorry” for what happened and has called the incident unfortunate.

Capers shot Aderrien Murry in the chest on May 20 while responding to a domestic dispute.

Capers declined to describe what happened the day of the shooting on the advice from his attorney, citing pending civil lawsuits regarding the incident.

Aderrien told GMA3 in an exclusive interview in May that he called 911 when his mother’s ex-boyfriend and father of one of her children showed up at their home during the early hours of the morning. Aderrien’s mother, Nakala Murry, said she asked Aderrien to call the police.

Aderrien’s family alleged that Capers and another officer arrived at the home with his firearm drawn and that he fired at Aderrien without warning as the boy emerged from the his bedroom after he and his family members were ordered by the officers to leave their house.

“I came out of the room like this,” Aderrien said, with his hands above his head as he reflected on the incident.

In a June interview following the shooting, Carr told Good Morning America that “the shooting was not intentional, it was not reckless, and [Capers] wishes none of this happened. It was a pure accident.”

On Dec. 14, a Sunflower County grand jury decided not to indict Capers after an investigation by the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, according to the state Office of the Attorney General.

After the grand jury declined to indict Capers, Aderrien’s attorney said the family “is determined to seek accountability and justice through both state and federal court civil suits.”

“While the grand jury has spoken, we firmly believe that there are unanswered questions and that the shooting of Aderrien Murry was not justified,” said attorney Carlos E. Moore. “We are committed to seeking justice for Aderrien and his family, and we will persist in our efforts to ensure accountability through the civil legal process.”

Aderrien’s family filed both a federal civil lawsuit and a criminal complaint against the officer and the city of Indianola following the incident, claiming the officer was reckless and inadequately trained. The complaint alleges that Aderrien was hospitalized for five days with a collapsed lung, lacerated liver and fractured ribs from the gunshot wound in his chest.

Capers argued he received “very good” training.

“I’m a certified law enforcement officer,” he said. “I took pride in what I did. I was good at what I did. I’m a public servant at heart. I always will be.”

ABC News has reached out for comment from the City of Indianola.

Capers has said he doesn’t blame anyone for the way that they feel in response to the shooting: “If it was me in that predicament, I’d probably feel the same way. But I would hope that if it was to happen to me, God forbid, I would let the process take place instead of just jumping ship or passing judgment before you know it should be rendered.”

Aderrien had said in the May interview that he wanted to be a cop before the incident, and now wants to be a doctor.

Capers said he “can’t say that I blame him, but nevertheless, even though he’s such a young child, who knows what the future may hold, may change his mind.”

On Thursday evening, Capers’ attorney, Michael S. Carr, said his client had been reinstated on a 4-1 vote in a special call meeting. A start date has yet to be determined. When ABC News asked for a reaction, Carr said, “Officer Capers is ready to get back to work.” He had been on administrative non-paid leave.

ABC News has requested the body camera footage, which is currently under judicial seal.

ABC News’ Lataya Rothmiller contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

On Air Now

Now Playing On X101

Download The X101 App

Site Designed & Hosted by Eves Digital