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Evidence in Birdwood Ct. Incident Raises Questions - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Evidence in Birdwood Ct. Incident Raises Questions

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The case involving a man shot by police on Charlottesville's Birdwood Court in May is raising even more questions.

Josue Salinas Valdez faces four different charges, but people familiar with the investigation say some evidence might not add up.

Salinas Valdez is facing two misdemeanors and two felony charges after Albemarle police say a hit-and-run investigation turned violent on Birdwood Court a little more than a month ago. He entered a courtroom for the first time this week. Now some of the evidence may change the way you look at the case. 

Salinas Valdez was indicted by a grand jury on four charges Monday, including felony attempted malicious wounding of a law enforcement officer. 

Police say after Salinas Valdez fled the scene of a hit-and-run May 26, officers tracked him to a home on Birdwood Court where he violently resisted arrest. One officer then shot Salinas Valdez in the torso. 

Those details, and the evidence that led to his indictments, are included in a three-page release from Charlottesville Commonwealth's Attorney Dave Chapman. The memo references audio recordings from a dashboard camera inside a police cruiser, video from an eyewitness, and a toxicology report relating to Salinas Valdez's blood alcohol level. 

But at least one person familiar with that evidence, who declined to go on camera Wednesday, says some details are misleading. That person says the dashboard camera audio and video from the shooting officer's vehicle was not recovered after the shooting, and only usable audio was recovered from the other officer's camera. 

The person familiar with the evidence does not believe there is any foul play involved, but says this does create some uncertainty in the events leading up to the shooting. 

Charlottesville police have concluded their investigation. Albemarle police, meanwhile, are still conducting a routine internal investigation into their officer's actions while he remains on administrative leave. 

This is just one person's understanding of the evidence in this case, and despite these questions, the commonwealth's attorney thought there was enough evidence to bring charges against Salinas Valdez, and a grand jury believed there was enough to certify indictments. 

Salinas Valdez will be back in court July 16.

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