Family of combat veteran fatally shot by BCSO deputy calls for Sheriff Salazar to step down

Victim’s brother: ’Own up to your mistake’

Daniels' family is calling for changes in policy and for Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar to resign
Daniels' family is calling for changes in policy and for Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar to resign

SAN ANTONIO – Standing in front of his late brother’s west Bexar County home, Brendan Daniels said Wednesday that Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar should resign.

“Because he was so careless with his own deputies, the family is asking him to step down from his office,” Daniels said.

Damian Daniels, 30, a combat veteran, who his older brother said served two tours in Afghanistan, was shot and killed Aug. 25 during a two-minute struggle with Bexar County deputies.

Brendan Daniels said deputies had first spent 30 minutes talking with Damian. BCSO has said deputies initially arrived for a mental health check.

Brendan Daniels said his brother had no criminal history, but he did have mental health issues,. However, what led up the shooting was his “first mental episode.”

“When it comes to law enforcement and mental health, I believe law enforcement should not respond to calls like this,” Daniels said.

Daniels acknowledged that his brother had a gun tucked beneath his shirt, but also had a distorted look on his face.

“The last thing you want to do is make that paranoia or vivid imagination come true,” Daniels said.

Lee Merritt, a national civil rights attorney representing the Daniels family, said that Damian Daniels will be remembered on Sept. 11.

“We are calling for a national day of mourning on September 11, on the day that he’ll be buried,” Merritt said.

Brendan Daniels said the funeral will likely be posted on Facebook live “so the world can see how much he was loved.”

A vigil for Daniels is behind held on Wednesday night.

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About the Authors:

Jessie Degollado has been with KSAT since 1984. She is a general assignments reporter who covers a wide variety of stories. Raised in Laredo and as an anchor/reporter at KRGV in the Rio Grande Valley, Jessie is especially familiar with border and immigration issues. In 2007, Jessie also was inducted into the San Antonio Women's Hall of Fame.

Bill Caldera has been at KSAT since 2003. He covers a wide range of stories including breaking news, weather, general assignments and sports.