A man who shot a Black Lives Matter supporter in Austin this weekend was released from jail without being charged after he says he used his gun in self-defense, according to police.
The unnamed suspect, who left jail less than 24 hours after his arrest, said he shot and killed Garrett Foster for allegedly aiming an AK-47-style rifle at him.
The suspect reportedly told the police he was driving near a protest in Austin when he saw Foster with his wife, who was in a wheelchair. The suspect said he “shot someone who had approached the driver’s window of their vehicle and pointed a rifle at them,” before driving away from the protest and calling 911.
Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said police released the suspect without charging him after determining he acted in self-defense. Manley said the department has received some footage of the incident that shows Foster pointing his gun at the suspect’s window. He is encouraging anyone with more video of the shooting to turn it in.
“During the initial investigation of this incident, it appears that Mr. Foster may have pointed his weapon at the driver of this vehicle prior to being shot,” Manley said. “Mr. Foster — who was holding an AK-47-type assault rifle — approached the driver’s side window as others in the crowd began striking the vehicle.”
Anna Mayo, who is Foster’s sister, said her brother promoted the open-carry laws in the state of Texas.
“He always carried his guns with him,” Mayo said. “He always would exercise his right to carry, but he would never threaten somebody.
“He was one of the most kindhearted people — that was the whole reason he was out there.”
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