Moments before he was killed, Oscar Grant was punched in the face – but not by the BART officer who shot him. A cellphone video released by KTVU Jan. 23 shows another BART officer, identified as Tony Pirone, punching Grant just before he was shot by BART Officer Johannes Mehserle, who was arrested on murder charges Jan. 13.
Pirone, who punched Grant in the face, is the same officer who investigators say had his knee on Grant’s neck when the 22-year-old man was shot and killed on the Fruitvale BART station platform in Oakland at about 2 a.m. on New Year’s Day. Aside from Mehserle, no BART officers have been charged with wrongdoing.
Although unmentioned in the KTVU report, the video could potentially incriminate another BART officer. Since the female officer is shown in the video observing her colleague punching Grant, she would have been required to report what she saw to authorities.