Surveillance footage has recently surfaced of Texas cops shooting a 17-year-old girl in their own department lobby.
Kristiana Coignard, entered the Longview Police Station around 6:30pm last Thursday requesting to speak with a police officer. A few minutes later, a police officer can be seen entering the building and approaching Coignard in an aggressive fashion.
It is still unclear as to what initiated the use physical force against the teenage girl.
Coignard, “had been struggling with mental illness, including depression and bipolar disorder, since her mother died when she was four,” said her aunt, Heather Robertson, according to reports from Free Thought Project.
“She had been hospitalized twice in recent years after suicide attempts.”
After a few minutes of struggling with the presiding officer, two more police enter the scene, at which point Coignard is seen charging the officer involved in the initial confrontation. This display of aggression resulted in her being shot and killed, with officers claiming she “brandished a weapon.”
The department has yet to confirm what kind of weapon Coignard had in her possession, although Longview mayor Jay Dean told the Marshall News Messenger a “female wielding a knife entered the police department.”
It remains a mystery as to why the first officer did not handcuff and subdue the much smaller Coignard when he had the chance.
“I think it was a cry for help,” Robertson said. “I think they could have done something. They are grown men. I think there is something they are not telling us.”
The three officers have been out on paid leave while the Texas Rangers conduct an investigation.
It should be noted that Coignard is the third person killed by Longview police in the past year, following the deaths of a 15-year-old in March and a 23-year-old in August. In both cases, a grand jury cleared the officials involved of any wrongdoing.