Hambrick and Delke

Daniel Hambrick (left) and Andrew Delke (right)

 

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - The murder trial for a Metro Police officer charged with murder has been reset. The new trial date has not been set.

The Davidson County Grand Jury indicted Delke on first-degree murder charges after the July 2018 death of Daniel Hambrick.

Delke's trial had been set to begin with jury selection on June 15 and the trial beginning on July 22 before the latest delay. In February, the trial date was reset from March 16.

The Tennessee Supreme Court issued an order that all jury trials be suspended in the state until July 3. On March 25, the Supreme Court also extended the suspension of in-person court proceedings through May 31 or until the Chief Justice approves a plan for the judicial district.

The date for the trial has not been reset due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Delke shot and killed Hambrick on July 26, 2018, after a traffic stop near the intersection of 17th Avenue North and Jo Johnston Avenue.

At the time, Metro Police reported officers with the department's Juvenile Crime Task Force noticed a car driving erratically. Officers tried to stop the vehicle, but the vehicle did not pull over. Police did not give chase, opting instead to expand the search for the vehicle.

Later in the evening a Metro officer encountered a vehicle matching the car's description in the parking lot of the John Henry Hale Apartments near the corner of 17th Avenue North and Jo Johnston Avenue.

In a statement to the TBI, Delke's description of what happened that evening was played during his court hearing on Jan. 4.

Delke described watching Hambrick pull a gun from his waistband and point it in his direction while running away. Delke said Hambrick gave him what's called a "targeted glance," something he said police officers use to describe someone trying to get an idea of where to aim.

Delke also described repeatedly yelling to Hambrick to put the gun down. He said at that moment he was thinking Hambrick could shoot at any moment but also wanted to give him every opportunity to follow commands.

Delke said once he yelled for Hambrick to stop or he'll shot, he fired until Hambrick was on the ground.

After two days of testimony, General Sessions Judge Melissa Blackburn decided there was enough evidence to send the case to the grand jury.

"The Court is mindful of the fact that police work is stressful; that officers must make split second decisions and often act in a heroic manner. This does not justify the pursuit of a man suspected of no crime following the trailing of a car not apparently involved in any criminal activity. The decision to pursue Mr. Hambrick on foot seems from this proof to have been prompted by mere assumptions. While this behavior was sufficient to cause Mr. Delke to exercise caution for his own safety, it did not justify the foot pursuit and the killing of a man suspected of no crime known to the defendant at that time," Blackburn said in her order sending the case to the grand jury.

Delke remains on the police force and is working on administrative duty.

Related coverage

Trial date pushed back for Metro officer who killed Daniel Hambrick
Where we are with the Daniel Hambrick case, one year after his death
Metro police officer pleads not guilty in deadly shooting of suspect
Metro Police officer Andrew Delke indicted in shooting death of Daniel Hambrick
Metro officer shoots, kills suspect in north Nashville
 
 

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