Man shot by police major speaks out

Posted at 7:42 AM, Sep 30, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-30 07:42:14-04
Baltimore Police said it was the commander of the Southwest District who shot a man in Morrell Park Monday night.

Now that man is out of the hospital and walking with the help of crutches.  Joe Rau said he does not know why a Baltimore police officer stopped him, then shot him in the 2400 block of Washington Blvd.

RELATED: Police: Man shot by officer on Washington Boulevard

"The police got me coming out of my house. He said, 'what's your name sir?'  He was in an unmarked car. I was like 'what's your name? I don't know who you are.'  He told me to put my hands up. I had my hands the whole time with chapstick in my hand and he shot me," Rau said.

Police said Maj. Byron Conaway, a 16 year veteran of the force, fired a single shot that hit Rau's leg.

Investigators said the major was by himself and on his way to a community meeting when he "observed an individual he wanted to speak with."

"There was no weapon found on the person and right now we're still in the preliminary stages of the investigation," T.J. Smith, BPD spokesman, said Monday night.

The president of the Morrell Park and St Paul's Improvement Association told ABC2 Conaway was headed to their Monday night meeting.  That meeting still went on at the recreation center about a five minute drive away from the Washington Blvd intersection.

"How was I a threat?" Rau asked.

Police said Major Conaway gave commands for Rau to show both his hands that Rau never followed.

"If a cop tells you to put your hands up, you got to pull your hands out to put your hands up right? So how's he going to pull his hands out to put his hands up if he gets shot doing it," Rau's cousin, Jeff Wortman, said.

Rau said he has a lawyer. Conaway is on administrative duties while the Special Investigation Response Team handles the investigation. 

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