Former SAPD officer arrested more than 1 year after being indefinitely suspended for opening fire on fleeing juveniles, sources say

Oscar Cruz Jr. Cruz indefinitely suspended in 2020

Oscar Cruz Jr. was arrested and charged with deadly conduct-firearm, according to online records. (Bexar County Jail)

A former San Antonio police officer who fired two shots toward juveniles running from him and was indefinitely suspended in 2020 has been arrested and charged with deadly conduct-firearm, according to sources.

Oscar Cruz Jr. was arrested Thursday night, according to online records.

City officials released disciplinary records in late 2020, more than six weeks after KSAT had filed an open records request for the information.

Cruz had received the indefinite suspension, tantamount to firing, for an incident he was called to in the 9500 block of Five Forks on March 9, 2020, according to the records.

He had responded to calls about two teens pulling on vehicle door handles, according to the document.

The officer tried detaining one of the juveniles, who ran away from him. During the chase, Cruz pulled out his service weapon, according to the document.

During the chase, second juvenile threw an object, striking the officer in the face and head, according to the records.

“Officer Cruz fired two rounds at the direction of the suspects as they fled the scene,” according to the records, which violated the department’s use-of-force procedure.

The incident was captured on Cruz’s bodycam, according to the disciplinary record. During the incident, Cruz could be heard telling the juveniles “stop running or I will f—ing shoot you.”

Officer Oscar Cruz Jr. was indefinitely suspended on Oct. 20, 2020 records showed. (KSAT)

Cruz was also cited for using the muzzle of his gun as a signal to direct the responding officer.

“Officer Cruz failed to use sound judgment when he continued to point the firearm in the direction of the arriving officer.”

Records show Cruz was previously suspended at least once during his time with the San Antonio Police Department. In 2018, Cruz was suspended for three days after striking a pedestrian with his patrol car.

Cruz was handed the termination on Oct. 20, 2020. Records show he appealed that decision on Oct. 21.

Read more about how arbitration plays out of San Antonio police officers.


About the Authors:

Fares Sabawi has been a journalist in San Antonio for four years. He has covered several topics, but specializes in crime, courts, open records and data visualization.

Emmy-award winning reporter Dillon Collier joined the KSAT 12 Defenders in 2016. Dillon's investigative stories air weeknights on the Nightbeat. Dillon is a two-time Houston Press Club Journalist of the Year and a Texas Associated Press Broadcasters Reporter of the Year.