CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. - Two Clayton County sheriff deputies were fired and another demoted after Sheriff Victor Hill said they did not follow protocol over the weekend while they were on the scene of a deadly shooting at The Oasis event center on Jonesboro Road.
The two deputies, who hold the rank of captain and sergeant, were working off-duty as security for a Quinceañera when the shooting happened around 12:30 a.m. Sunday.
The Clayton County Police Department is the main agency that responded and is investigating the shooting death of 27-year-old Juan Perez Salvador.
“There was a reported altercation between the victim and the perpetrator,” said Capt. Marc Richards.
Despite “no weapons” signs posted on the building and the two off-duty deputies who were hired to work the event, the alleged shooting suspect, 17-year-old Jorge Beltran, managed to get inside with a gun and then get away.
“The shooter was gone upon our arrival,” said Capt. Richards.
Beltran was eventually caught but Sheriff Hill is now firing the two off-duty officers for violating protocol. When shots were fired, investigators said the deputies ran out the door with everyone else.
"Both deputies turned around and fled out of the door along with the fleeing crowd," Hill said in a news release Tuesday morning. "To make matters worse, both of them failed to render aid to the victim."
FOX 5 News obtained cell phone video showing the chaotic moments after the shooting.
According to the sheriff, the two deputies never went back inside to render aid to the victim.
A lieutenant from the CCSO, who was later called to the scene, is also being demoted for not alerting the command staff about the negligence.
"While the special forces did an excellent job capturing the murder suspect within 48 hours, there were inactions by some of my personnel that was unacceptable," Hill said.
FOX 5 News spoke to the event manager, who didn’t want to go on camera, but says it was all captured on surveillance video which is now being reviewed by investigators.
The manager says he’s not sure if the deputies were intentionally running away or if they were just confused by all of the chaos.
Sheriff Hill plans to send the case to the Clayton County District Attorney’s Office who will decide whether to prosecute this case, in addition to prosecuting the teen who is now facing felony murder charges for the shooting.
The names of the deputies have not yet been released.