San Antonio Sheriffs Murder Unarmed Gilbert Flores, Then Go After the Video Exposing Their Crime

September 14, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


On August 28, county sheriffs in San Antonio, Texas, shot and killed Gilbert Flores as he had his hands up.

It might well have been yet another police murder: covered up, whitewashed, and blamed on the victim—with lies about how he was a threat to police, and a bunch of irrelevant bullshit about his personal life or his background.

In fact, the blaming of the victim happened—police claimed Gilbert Flores was “armed with a knife.” And media reported all kinds of allegations that, even if true, didn’t justify police murdering him.

But the shooting was caught on a video taken by Michael Thomas, a bystander. If you haven’t seen the video, watch it.

The video shows Flores running from the two Bexar County Sheriffs deputies, who approach him, one holding a shield. Flores then raises both his arms into the air. Although there is a period in the video where one of Flores hands is obscured behind a pole, Michael Thomas—the man who took the video—told reporters Flores raised both hands. The video clearly shows Flores, shirtless, presenting no threat to police.

The video shows Flores being shot—at least two shots are heard. In the video, Michael Thomas exclaims, “They just cold-blooded shot him!” After Flores falls to the ground, the police who shot him wander around, seemingly uninterested in whether he is dead or alive. Flores died at the scene.

Michael Thomas sold his video of the murder for a $100 fee to KSAT, a San Antonio TV station, which aired the video on its newscast. The video provoked widespread outrage at an outrageous murder. And the system lashed back. CNN and other news sources ran repeated stories that police had a second video that showed Flores had a knife in his hand. No such video has yet been produced, but mainstream media reported over and over on the murder of Flores as if he was armed.

Then the Bexar County sheriffs went after the TV station for showing the video. The sheriff’s office tweeted out: “broadcasting a man’s death for $100 sparked threats to our deputies’ lives. Let KSAT know what you think.” And they posted a phone number for the station. This was a conscious call on cop-lovers who follow the sheriff on Twitter to go after the TV station for showing the video. To their credit, the station refused to stop showing the video.

This move by the Bexar County Sheriff’s office—to mobilize their police-loving Twitter followers to go after a TV station for showing a video of them murdering someone, and then and claim they, the murdering police, are the victims here—is part of an ominous pattern. A pattern of turning reality upside down and portraying the epidemic of police brutality as a non-issue while portraying righteous anger at that epidemic of police murder as something criminal (see “October 24, New York City: POLICE MURDER MUST STOP! The Struggle to Stop Police Murder”).

The murder of Gilbert Flores is an outrage. The killers must be indicted, convicted, and jailed. And the whole way the system is moving to try to silence exposure and protest against police murder highlights how urgent it is that everyone in society choose sides NOW in this battle to stop police terror.



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