VIDEO | Betty Shelby's police interview after Crutcher shooting released
TULSA, Okla. (KTUL) -- Video of Officer Betty Shelby's police interview following the death of Terence Crutcher was released Friday.
The 47-minute video shows Shelby, at times emotional, giving her account to homicide investigator Sgt. Dave Walker three days after the shooting.
"And he just starts walking toward his vehicle and I said 'Stop, right now you need to stop'," said Shelby. "And I'm following because I don't want to lose visual on him because I don't know if he has a gun. I'm scared he has a gun in his pocket."
Accompanied by attorney Scott Wood, Shelby says she's aimed her gun at people dozens of times during her career but she had never been so scared in her life until her encounter with Crutcher.
"What's going through my mind is, 'cause I seen him look back at me, look at the vehicle several times," said Shelby. "He's looked at the vehicle several times like he's making a thought of what to do."
Shelby says she doesn't believe it would've been feasible to use less lethal force.
"And so this whole time, he's checking his pocket, pulling his pants," said Shelby. "I'm like, I know he has a gun. I make contact with another deputy. I say, 'hey, I think that guy has a gun on him'."
Shelby says Crutcher's arms were hanging beside his legs and he was motionless, looking at her and then his vehicle.
"His hands are up and he starts taking steps to the front of my vehicle," said Shelby. "His hand drops to his pocket...'Man get your hands up in the air!'"
Shelby says she yelled at Crutcher to stop and he does but he positioned his body facing his SUV.
"Then I can see him look beyond me and he just starts walking toward his vehicle," said Shelby. "I say 'stop, stop right now, you need to stop!'"
"He goes on around his vehicle. He goes to the driver's side. I've come around and he drops his arm, he goes in. I say, 'stop stop stop!"
Crying, Shelby says Crutcher didn't stop.
"I thought he was going for a gun and I took a target," said Shelby.
Through tears, Shelby says she thought Crutcher was going to kill her.
Three days after Shelby gave her statement to police and before the homicide investigation was complete, she was charged with first-degree manslaughter in the heat of passion.
During the trial, Walker testified the district attorney's office didn't consult his team prior to filing charges -- an unusual move, according to the lead homicide detective.
Ultimately, a jury found her not guilty.
Read more stories about Betty Shelby and Terence Crutcher.