Man who Shot Cop in No-Knock Raid Over 1.2 Oz. of Weed Sentenced to 13 Years

Tyler HarrellKXAN

Ben Keller

Texas Jurors sentenced Tyler Harrell to 13 years today for shooting a cop in the knee during a no-knock SWAT drug raid.

Austin police say they found 1.2 ounces of marijuana and 40 grams of Xanax inside Harrell's residence during a no-knock raid two years ago.

Harrell says he thought intruders were breaking in when he shot Austin SWAT cop James Pittman because the cops never identified themselves.

SWAT team officers raided Pittman's parents' home around 6 a.m. on Aug. 13, 2016 in order to execute a search warrant to look for illegal drugs.

Pittman testified at Harrell's trial this week, complaining to jurors about needing a knee replacement, but saying he's too young to get one.

He also testified saying he struggles to play with his kids after being shot.

"Is it worth it putting my life on the line if that’s what the community thinks?" Pittman said during an interview with the Austin-American Statesman in response to the not guilty verdict a jury rendered for Ray Rosas.

Rosas is the Texas man found not guilty after shooting three cops during a no knock raid.

During Harrell's trial Thursday, a psychiatrist testified Harrell suffers from oppositional defiant disorder and had behavior problems in school.

Harrell's psychiatrist also testified that at the time of the police shooting, Harrell was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder following an incident four months earlier when he and his friends were robbed at gunpoint by a masked assailant.

The gunman shot at Harrell, the psychiatrist testified.

Eventually, Harrell was able to wrestle the gun away from the man and chased him out of his friend's apartment.

Harrell attempted to shoot the man, who police later identified as a classmate, but no bullets were in the chamber.

During his trial, the 299th district court in Travis County included 18 SWAT team members dressed in their department-issued uniforms.

"Look at this gallery," Michael Chandler, Harrell's defense attorney, told the jury.

“You don’t think this is a lot of political pressure for these prosecutors?"

The jury found Harrell not guilty of a more serious capital murder charge .

Harrell was convicted earlier this week of aggravated assault.

The case has brought attention to questions about whether or not no-knock tactics are safe for people suspected of crimes or even police themselves.

Some experts question the criteria used to obtain a warrant for no-knock raids, which police say are useful due to the element of surprise, which makes it difficult to destroy evidence.

The no-knock search warrant used to raid Harrell's parents' home was signed by Austin Municipal Judge Ronald Meyerson.

Meyerson said he signed the warrant after Austin police detective Steve Hawkins gave the judge reason enough to believe Harrell was a "large drug dealer" of marijuana and cocaine.

Detective Hawkins cited materials that included plastic baggies with "marijuana residue" as evidence in a sworn affidavit.

So far, Harrell's defense attorneys have not announced whether or not they'll appeal the jury's finding.

Comments (5)
No. 1-5

A jury of the typical American bootlicker. They didn't announce at the breach of the door... thatshouldd be on them.


This is an OUTRAGE. The kid was just shot by a mugger. There IS NO QUESTION OF HIS INNOCENCE. It should have been thrown out of court. The jury was prejudiced. No one in the jury should have been over 25. PEERS.
Also, did he have a real lawyer or just a PD? PDs dont work for you, they work for the DA. They lunch together and work out 5 cases at a time, compromising sentences.
This kid's life is ruined over POT.
It is a violation of justice for pot to even be illegal. You dont get to tell me what plants i can and cannot have.

Why did they even raid him? Over pot? Don't those cops have any self respect? Wasting all that time and money on pot when theres killers and racists out there?
THIS IS SUCH A MISCARRIAGE OF JUSTICE i cannot fathom any human being destroying this child's life over this.
He can never have a decent career.
He will be exposed to a darker world than he's ever known.

Those jurors are pieces of shit that deserve their lives to be destroyed .
They found 0 coke and an amount of pot that casual recreational smokers would have. I bet they lied about the coke to strengthen their case.
This is horrifying.
This boy's life has been destroyed
The cop is fine.
Hes healed
How do you justify destroying a boys life over a minor injury?



Confusing article. It says the cops raided Pittman's parent's home, but Pittman was the cop that got shot.
Also says Harrel was found not guilty of capital murder. Who was murdered?


Give him a medal! Hope he appeals!


I hope that Harrell's defense attorney objected to the presence of any cop in uniform in the gallery. No one being tried should be subject to that pressure being put on jurors. And the extraneous talk about what the cop thinks of his injury. Austin police, where are the videos of this planned raid of a person's home? Why was the warrant judge led to believe there's a "large drug dealer" of marijuana and cocaine? Another case of cops = violence. Here they were thugs breaking in.

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