An unarmed man shot by a South Florida police officer said the officer should never have fired upon him.
The man, who was taken into custody on a drug charge, was on one of the busiest roadways in South Florida when he was stopped. He said he was fully cooperating with both officers when one shot him for what appeared to be no reason.
Michael Gavins was pulled over by two officers in South Miami a week ago for an alleged traffic violation at a gas station on U.S. 1, near the University of Miami. Gavins didn't have a weapon, but said he ended up being shot in the chest.
"'You can check me. You can check the car, you can do whatever you want. Please don't shoot me.' He paused maybe 30 seconds and the next thing I hear, 'boom,'" Gavins explained. "If the overt action is putting my hands up, telling him I am not a threat, then I don't know."
He was ultimately charged with possessing marijuana with an intent to distribute and resisting arrest without violence.
"I just thank God that it wasn't worse than it is. It could have been worse. I'm just glad to be here, be alive, you know?" Gavins said. "I could be gone right now."
According to the police report, after Gavins was out of his vehicle, "Officer Rezaie then observed Gavins reaching into the front of his waistband... Gave Gavins a verbal command to take his hands out but with negative results." According to the report, "Gavins began to act in a nervous manner... refused once again and began to walk towards Officer Rezaie."
Gavins and Coral Gables Attorney Paul Layne exclusively told NBC 6 that Officer Aryo Rezaie was out of line when he fired his weapon.
"It's just outrageous conduct by law enforcement. We have another instance of an unarmed black male being fired upon by law enforcement for no good reason. Mr. Gavins' civil rights has been violated and my job here at Silva & Silva is to make sure that the light is shined on the story," Layne said.
The officer was placed on a three-day administrative leave, but South Miami Police told NBC 6 he is now back on the street.
Gavins has never been convicted of a crime. The officer hasn't faced any disciplinary actions in his three years on the force.
One lawyer told NBC 6 he witnessed the interaction. He said Gavins was cooperating and he was surprised Gavins was shot.
The Miami-Dade Police Department is investigating.