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At a time when outrage over the frequency of police shootings is growing regionally and nationally, the killing of Daniel Brumley on a brisk morning last month in Fort Worth passed by with barely a ripple.

The Star-Telegram printed a few paragraphs on Jan. 17, under the headline “Fort Worth officer fatally shoots man who was stabbing him in leg.” Television news reports were equally brief, sharing basic information released by police –– an officer was hospitalized after shooting an unidentified man who’d stabbed him in the leg shortly after 4 a.m. on Northeast 36th Street in the Diamond Hill neighborhood. The officer had pulled over the man’s vehicle during a traffic stop, the suspect was dead, and the officer was in stable condition.

Police crime scene paint
Police crime scene paint is still visible on Northeast 36th Street more than a month after Brumley’s death. Jeff Prince

The next day’s news reports were just as short. They included the dead man’s name and age –– he was 27, from Fort Worth. He died from multiple gunshot wounds after fighting an unnamed police officer who was in stable condition with knife wounds. Police were investigating. The officer was on routine administrative leave.

FW Axe Factory Rectangle

And that was the end of the reporting.

Eleven days later, another Fort Worth police officer was shot while answering a 911 call. Officers returned fire and killed the shooter, a man with a history of mental illness. The wounded officer underwent surgery and was in stable condition, police said. News media reported that fellow officers gathered at the hospital for a vigil, attended by Interim Police Chief Rhonda Robertson, Mayor Betsy Price, and Fort Worth City Council member Dennis Shingleton. Various officials called on the city’s residents to pray for the officer and for other officers who put their lives on the line to protect and to serve.

Weeks passed. Super Bowl excitement came and went. The world kept spinning, and the little blip of a shooting in Diamond Hill faded from most people’s memories. Not for Brumley’s mother, though. She was so shaken by her son’s death that she sank into depression, stopped eating, went into diabetic shock, and landed in the intensive care unit of a local hospital. She was released a week later but relapsed and spent another week in the hospital before being released again on Sunday.

Brumley’s seven children haven’t forgotten the tall, funny guy who was a loving father even though he sometimes acted like a big kid and wasn’t always around.

His sister, Veronica Castillo, won’t be forgetting her little brother any time soon. She spoke to him on the phone about 15 minutes before he was shot. Brumley had three sisters and seven nieces and nephews, and most of the kids were wild about him. Some considered him a father figure and confidante, she said.

“My brother had a big impact on all of us,” Veronica said. “He was so alive, so alive.”

And he’s still on the mind of Nicole Ayala, the last friend to see him alive. Brumley had dropped her off at her house after a night out. Immediately he texted her from his car to say, “Had a great time.”

It was 4:03 a.m.

“So did I,” she wrote back at 4:06.

Brumley’s next text surprised her.

“I got pulled over,” he wrote.

“WTF,” she replied.

“Yep.”

“Why?”

She fell asleep waiting for his reply that never came, for an explanation she’s never gotten. The next day she learned Brumley had driven barely two blocks before being pulled over and shot. She couldn’t believe it. He’d been in such a great mood moments before, and they’d had such a good time.

“I want to know what happened,” she said. “This doesn’t seem right to me, honestly. He had no bad intentions.”

Two others won’t be forgetting Brumley either, two people he’d never met. Two people who watched the traffic stop from the darkness of their doorways and say the police version of what happened doesn’t match what they saw.

*****

38 COMMENTS

  1. My family lives in disbelieve and with everything not making sense of what really happened. A young man full of life was taken from us way too soon. He was a loving father of 7 kids that will never get another chance to see or hug there father again in this lifetime. Whatever happened to “serve and protect”? Daniel (D-Boy) I Love You cousin and it hurts me to know your gone and I will never see you in person again. I listen to your music everyday wishing I had more time to spend with you. I can’t explain how much your missed here on earth and how hurt the family is now that your not here with us. You will forever be in our hearts and I thank god you were apart of our family….I am glad I got to call you my cousin. Rest in Peace Baby Boy. Till next time we meet again D-Boy.

  2. On the 3rd page, 4 paragraphs under the picture of Daniel’s wife and mom, they (officer Hix) are using the name David Brumley? Who is David? This is about Daniel Brumley. Is this the editors mistake or is it the mistake of the officer speaking about the case?

  3. “David” was the police officer’s mistake in his written response to my questions. The [sic] thing that you see after the name means that the Weekly was aware the name was misspelled but thought it important to leave it that way.

  4. So glad this article was written. While I have the utmost respect for law enforcement, I find it incomprehensible that every officer is not provided with a video camera to be worn on their person at all times that they are on duty. The excuse from the police departments about them not being in the budget seem completely ridiculous considering how much money is spent fighting lawsuits from family’s effected by police brutality and man hours spent in internal investigations. These cameras should absolutely be mandatory to protect our law enforcements actions and to bring peace to families in situations such as these.

  5. These cases are sad even when a police shooting is justified. That said, I think most people believe that most police shootings are justified. The article is slanted to accuse the police and explain away any fault of Daniel Brumley. For example, Daniel’s mentor, Mary Perez, said he faced an economic barrier as a young man with no college growing up in the Northside. Perhaps, but what about the fact that he had 7 kids with 4 different women?

    Such men often have child support issues. Tarrant County family court records show Daniel owed $30,000 as of 2011 in one child support case, and $35,000 as of 2013 in another case. In the latter case, constables tried to serve him with an order to appear in court, but they could not find him. He was finally served on August 8, 2014 with an order to appear on August 19. This time constables easily found him because he was in jail. He was out of jail on August 12, like your article says, but he did not appear as ordered. So in September 2014 a capias (which is treated like an arrest warrant) was issued.

    When the officer stopped Daniel that fateful night, he checked for outstanding warrants, and it was this capias that he found. He then would have taken Daniel into custody. The family says they checked afterwards to see if Daniel had any outstanding warrants that night. But why did they check on that? To see if he might have had a reason to resist arrest?

    A common thread running through the police killings of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and Daniel Brumley, is that they were young men who resisted arrest or, worse, assaulted a cop. Who taught them their values? Who taught them it is acceptable to resist the police? In each case, grieving parents called out for police reform. In my opinion, they might have looked for fault at home.

    • The only one saying Daniel resisted arrest is the cop who shot him. The story talks about two witnesses who say different. Whoa re yoiu to say Daniel resisted arrest like Eric Garner and Michael Brown and brought this on himself? Were you there? No you weren’t.

    • The family (actually, a friend helping the family) said they sought an attorney to look for warrants because they wondered why Daniel was removed from his car for a traffic stop, and they hadn’t been able to get that information from police.

      Daniel was way behind on child support payments, obviously skipping his payments while he was in prison or jail, but also when he was free. Daniel’s wife said child support payments were being automatically deducted from his paychecks at the job he held when he died.

      • The max an employer can withhold for child support under Texas law is 50%, even if the amount owed is higher. Realistically, by making 7 babies with multiple baby-mamas and without a secure job, he was setting up circumstances from which he could never recover. Now that he’s gone, we taxpayers will be supporting his kids, but we probably were already.

        • Just me, speaking only for myself, I had much, much rather be supporting innocent babies than grown-up Peckerwood cops who lie like a rug. It’s hard for me to imagine anyone who could disagree.

          • Benito, probably a large portion of the 47% who pay no federal taxes think it’s a good idea for federal taxpayers to support other people’s kids. I got that.

          • Gordita, I assure you that the self-important smartypants who side with black-hearted, Peckerwood bullies against their own sisters and brothers don’t impress me even a tiny smidgion. What do you eat? Have you no shame? Why do you hate your fellow Mexican sisters & brothers? Are you rich? Have you no shame? Do you think Jesus was lying when he made us aware “it is in giving that we recieve”. Do you get that or maybe you are not only a fool but a heathen?

          • Unless Jesus was lying, it is an expected and honorable act to assist the poor, the hungry, and the down-trodden. Why do you hate Jesus? You behave like a heathen. You think and talk like a heathen. You are a disgraceful member of the Latina family. Repent, your breath stinks, ask anyone.

          • Benito, you can’t support a position by quoting a Bible verse in isolation. Jesus did not countenance greed, but neither did he preach sloth and irresponsibility. And what is a fellow Mexican sister? Una lesbiana? Learn English.

          • Gordita, learm compassion, learn that talking down to heartbroken familys with a murdered family member isn’t acceptable by normal citizens. Your opinions don’t hold water, you are a disgraceful human being. Why do you torment this honorable family?Who made you Queen bee? Learn common decency. You cannot support a position by being a self satisfied hammer-head. I have a sweet bird-dog with a bigger heart than you. Grow up.

          • Another heartbroken family’s determination to blame their son’s death on a racist cop led to the burning of Ferguson, Missouri. All for nothing. Even the white-hating, anti-cop Attorney General Eric Holder admits the cop was in the right. There was no “hands up” and there was no “don’t shoot” and there was no shot in the back. That was all a lie.

            Not here. Concerned citizens are right to resist the Brumley family’s attempt to accuse the cop who shot their son as a racist and try their case in the newspaper.

          • The cop can’t be tried in the newspaper. The cop can take the lie test. Why not? Again why not? To believe cops don’t lie, steal, fool around on their wives, covet other folks good fortune,and have stinking feet is stupid. He should demand it himself, why hide…what’s good for the goose is good for the gander, Just take the test. Cut the crap, quit hiding like other criminals, get right… face the music, or get out of town like a egg-sucking dog.

          • Don’t you watch the news? Are you deaf, blind, and crazy? The Police Chief, and down to the janitor sweeping up the City Hall in Ferguson are liars, thieves, racist, and tee-total maggots. God is currently rewarding the heros in Ferguson who are standing up to the racist rats who hold power. Are you on drugs? You need some help girl, don’t you have a Priest? If not find a shrink, and absolutely quit taling those pills.

    • Mariposa, I have no idea what you are talking about, because you decide to become flippant on the issue about child support and comments that were inappropriate toward people of races. The point is not about child support or values, the point is, what had happened that night.

      • Mandy, following the Michael Brown killing in Ferguson, his family and much of the media created a false narrative of a “gentle giant” who fell victim to a police proclivity to shoot young men of color. It turned out that Brown was a thug who stole cigars, roughed up a store clerk, roughed up a cop, then charged the cop while the cop was shooting at him.

        This story also creates a false narrative. It says Brumley was a loving father though he was seldom around. Viewed differently, Brumley was a liberal sperm-donor who didn’t financially support his kids. FWPD Det. William Hix told the FWW reporter that Brumley was wanted for warrants on the night of the incident, including a warrant for unpaid child support. The family disputes this. They say they had an attorney check for outstanding warrants and the attorney found none. Thus, the family discredits even an objectively ascertainable statement from FWPD. Why?

        The question for you is: Why does any disclosure of facts that challenges the family’s narrative amount to racism?

        • False narrative? HA! So you know Daniel, the 4 mothers to his children and his 7 children personally? I’d be willing to bet that you do NOT. Yes Daniel made mistakes in his life that ultimately set him up for failure but to say he wasn’t a loving father simply because of unpaid child support is ignorant and disgusting.

    • The family sought an attorney to check for warrants not to see if there was a reason to resist (Daniel has been arrested several times and never,not once has resisted) instead they checked to see if there was a reason he was stopped in general to rule out profiling.

  6. Joe I don’t think it is disputed that the cop was stabbed. So either Daniel stabbed him or he stabbed himself. If the witnesses can’t say which, then they weren’t witnesses to the whole episode.

    • Therefore, What IS disputed is why the whining, gutless cop is hiding and not taking a lie detector test. It’s free, doesn’t cost him a dime. cops love giving lie-detector test. Do you sense something peculiar here? Why don’t all the cops involved jump at the opportunity to clear everything up? Well Mariposa??? Talk is cheap. In this instance, action is sky-high. What’s the hold up? Are these cowards so special that Fort Worth lets them smile and walk on by this stinking travesty? Fort Worth is supposed to be better than this. let’s clear this up. It’s simple. Just discontinue the self-righrous jive. Get real, get honest, stand up straight Fort Worth Police Department. They told us in school that cops were our friend. Make it so. Get it right.

  7. @Mariposa: “The article is slanted to accuse the police and explain away any fault of Daniel Brumley.”

    As the author of this piece, I agree the article appears slanted. That tends to happen when one side of the argument won’t or can’t make themselves available to answer questions and provide information. Police provided very little information. Daniel’s friends and family were willing to talk for hours. The story might feel slanted in Daniel’s favor because his relatives did most of the talking and filling in missing blanks. The police have 60 days to finish their investigation and another 30 days to present to the grand jury. So the family must wait three months to get any information about the shooting of their loved one. That’s a long time to wait. Yesterday I spoke with another family whose son was shot and killed by Fort Worth police. They’re still waiting two years later for information and explanations from police. This newspaper is not slanted against police, but we’re not inclined to wait months or years to write a story about a controversial situation because one side won’t talk.

  8. I graduated from high-school here in Fort Worth in 1961. Three of my best buddies in school became Fort Worth policemen. I’m a recovering, falling-down drunkard with over 30 years of sobriety today. I have been aquainted with quite a few alcoholic police-people both before and after sobering up and attempting to amount to something.Several years ago, during his midnight shift, one of my high-school policeman pals was caught burglarizing a business, and loading the stolen goods into the trunk of his patrol car. He was quietly fired and there is no record of the incident. I certainly don’t know if the policeman involved in killing this young man is being truthful or lying like a rug, but I do know that a cop will lie like a rug concerning things no more important than a trafic ticket. I suggest asking the cops involved to take a lie detector test. They are really big on lie detector tests when they are pitching and not catching. It would surely cause me to trust the cops more in this instance. Otherwise whatever the police say is not reliable. They become outcast with their fellow officers if they hold one another to the standards they demand from citizens. In my experience, whatever story they finally come up with is not worth a nickle without validation.The cop killed a citizen. I pray he is just an unfortunent hero, but in this instance he and the other cops should be instructed to take the test. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander…isn’t it? The cops should jump right on this idea. Anyone care to bet every cop involved will refuse? This could get interesting if some of the big shots we elected to represent us at City Hall support this idea seems reasonable to me. Cops are cracker-jacks at pitching….let’s see how they do at catching?

    • Hello…..hello…..hello…………….hello……………………hello You still there Mariposa?????????? hello hello hello???

      • There is good cops and bad cops and the guy who shot Daniel Brumley will be revealed as one or the other if not in this life then the next. The problem I see is that the police department are the ones who get to determine whether their own guys are wrong or right and seem to give them the benefit of a doubt most of the time. They don’t always give regular citizens the same benefit of a doubt and seem to go out of their way to ruin somebody’s life sometimes. Seems like two systems of justice, one for them and one for everyone else and that makes people suspicious of police.

        • Get it right Tex. Clearly, there are bad cops and there are bad cops until cops are required to maintain the same conduct and standards as normal citizens. In Fort Worth, they certainly have not behaved that way in my lifetime. When I was younger, my best buddies stepfather dealt blackjack in the backroom of a tavern on South Hemphill Street and paid a percentage of the take to a Detective who picked it up weekly. He shot and killed a drunken card player who was trying to cheat. He wasn’t even arrested. All the cops involved with this despicable killing should be required to face the music. Pull a knife on a cop, get real. What are you smoking?

      • Yes, I’m here, Ben. Sure, I’d be willing to force cops, presidents, secretaries of state, congressmen, accused criminals, and a lot of folks to submit to polygraph tests. Maybe the self-proclaimed witnesses in this case should take polygraphs, too. Fact is, these tests are voluntary. (C.I.A. agents probably agree to them as a condition of employment).The results of a polygraph, and a person’s willingness or not to take one, are not admissible in evidence.

        • That’s right Mariposa, it’s voluntary. Why in pluperfect hell haven’t these heros already taken the test? You are very imformed concerning police people.,, why are the cops not demanding to be tested for truthfulness? How could this be? Whose on first? What’s to lose? I am aware of what is admissable in court. In this instance, in my mind what’s not admissable is for the cops to refuse. Don’t you think so? What’s to lose? You should be first in line demanding some evidence of honesty What’s good for the goose, you know? While they’re on the machine, ask them how many times they’ve lied under oath previously. Two dollars will get you five if you can get a single cop to go for it. I’m standing on ready, let’s go. Cops love to demand lie detector test, let her rip!!! You should be demanding it if you want the truth. Let’s go, get it on. Who is lying here? Certainly not the dead young man.

        • I have no way of knowing if the folks who witnessed this rotten, stinking, dishonest, dishonorable, cowwardly piece of slimy, repulsive police service to our community would take the test. The Police Dept.has dismissed their eye witness testimony right off the bat. What’s new here?

        • Don’t you believe, Mariposa, that all that would be required to get a test of the decency, and character of these killer Police people would simply be to suggest to them that the community would respect them and appreciate them more if they would help untangle the tragedy of blowing this young person to Kingdom Come? I can think of only one reason for them to hesitate one second. If I were in their shoes, I would demand the test or expect to be shamed and fired and reviled by square citizens. What’s wrong with you? Why do you hate Fort Worth? Who picked you to reply here? You won’t lie to us …will you? Come clean, O.K.???

  9. A common thread
    (already false)
    running through the police killings of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and Daniel Brumley, is that they were young men who resisted arrest or, worse, assaulted a cop.
    FALSE
    Who taught them their values?
    Who are you to ask such a question when you probably know nothing about these people and judge them on only what you’ve heard of them.
    Who taught them it is acceptable to resist the police?
    In each case, grieving parents called out for police reform. In my opinion, they might have looked for fault at home.
    In my opinion I’m glad you’ve stated your opinion but have no facts to base this on this particular case to be thinking you can just compare them to one another. May this family receive there justice sooner than later.

  10. A common thread… Already this comment left is false. running through the police killings of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and Daniel Brumley, is that they were young men who resisted arrest or, worse, assaulted a cop. Also FALSE! Who taught them their values? Who are you to ask such a question when you probably know nothing about these people and judge them on only what you’ve heard of them.
    Who taught them it is acceptable to resist the police? In each case, grieving parents called out for police reform. In my opinion, they might have looked for fault at home. In my opinion you should have just kept your own opinion to yourself. You say a lot but have no facts to base this on this particular case to be thinking you can just compare them to one of the others. May this family receive there justice sooner than later.

  11. Protect and serve, my foot. Someone in authority in Fort Worth should demand that this so called hero and his bosses begin conducting their duties as they are sworn to do. Whose on first? Whose going to get the truth out of these lying cops? Right is right and wrong is wrong, and this stinking episode is outrageous. Each policeman involved should behave as an honest public servant and ask for a test to confirm the truth!! That a single policeman involved in this tragedy refuses to verify their statement is outrageous. Every citizen in Fort Worth should be throwing rocks at these shiftless bums. Why are the decent cops not demanding cooperation from these louts? Is there no honor or honesty in any of our Fort Worth Police? On the square, has it come to this? Mayor? City Council? Preachers? Lawyers? School Teachers? Firemen? Are we shameless? Do we have any honorable cops with a single hair on their butt? Has it come to this? At long last? Good grief. What a lousy, stinking, piece of work from the entire city if this is the best we care to do.

  12. Mariposa,are disgusting. I can assure you that you are not taking care of his children. The mothers took care of them financially!! So don’t assume anything.
    You are talking as if you know first hand what happened. The truth will be revealed and you will eat crow!! You should be ashamed of yourself!! His family is grieving and you have no compassion

  13. Why was he out having a “great time” with his female companion at 4am when he has a wife and kids at home? Sounds like he found God alright.

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