SALT LAKE CITY — Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has joined local media organizations in calling for the video of a fatal shooting inside Utah's federal courthouse to be released to the public.
On April 21, 2014, Siale Maveni Angilau, 25, was on trial in a racketeering case against members of the Tongan Crip Gang. As a witness was testifying about the daily lifestyle of TCG members, Angilau, without warning, grabbed a pen and lunged at the witness.
A U.S. marshal fired multiple rounds at the charging defendant, ultimately killing him.
The incident was recorded by the courtroom's surveillance video. But the U.S. Marshals Office, the FBI and the courts have declined repeated requests by members of the media to release video of the incident or the identity of the marshal who fired the shots.
Last week, Chaffetz, chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, sent a letter to David Nuffer, chief judge for the U.S. District Court in Utah, encouraging him to release the video.
"Access to this video will allow the public to better understand the events that unfolded in the courtroom that day," Chaffetz wrote in his letter.
The congressman noted that proper edits could be made to video to protect the privacy of jurors and bystanders.