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Attorneys for APD officer request change of venue for upcoming October trial


AUSTIN (KXAN) — Attorneys for the Austin police officer accused of murder are asking a judge for a change of venue for the upcoming trial in October.

Attorneys claim Christopher Taylor will not get a fair trial in Austin because of biased media coverage of the investigation.

Court proceedings earlier this month indicated the trial would take place Oct. 16.

Taylor, 31, is accused of shooting and killing Michael Ramos, 42, during a confrontation with police in a south Austin apartment complex parking lot in April 2020.

Austin Police said on that day, officers responded after a 911 call reported someone dealing drugs in a car and that the man had a gun.

APD said when officers arrived at the scene, Ramos was directed to get out of the car.
After getting out of the car, police say the incident escalated and an officer hit Ramos in the thigh with a non-lethal bean bag round.

Ramos got back in the car and tried to drive away and that’s when police say Taylor fired his weapon.

Taylor is currently on administrative leave from the department.

Case History

In December 2020, Ramos’ mother, Brenda, sued the city of Austin and Taylor in a wrongful death civil lawsuit, which claims Taylor shot Mike without justification.

“Any competent police officer would have known that shooting a suspect in the head because he was driving away from police and bystanders — toward a dead-end blocked by dumpsters and a building — was a gross civil rights violation,” the lawsuit reads.

In 2021, a Travis County grand jury returned an indictment for Taylor.

Former prosecutor Gary Cobb is coming out of retirement to help with the murder trial. Travis County District Attorney José Garza made a special request for Cobb to help with the case, according to a source who asked to remain anonymous because of their proximity to the case.

In July 2019, Taylor was accused of shooting and killing 46-year-old Mauris Nishanga DeSilva in downtown Austin during a welfare check. In addition to a murder charge, he also faces a charge of deadly conduct for the discharge of a firearm related to the 2019 incident. This case is still going through the court process.


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