Pictured: The rookie cop who shot dead an unarmed grandfather with dementia - as it is revealed the the confused 73-year-old was carrying a CRUCIFIX when he was killed 

  • Police responded to a call about a man with a gun around 12.30am on Monday
  • Woman in Francisco Serna's neighborhood in Bakersfield, California spotted him in her driveway, and told her husband that she thought he had a gun
  • The husband called 911, saying Serna had a gun without expressing any doubt
  • Neighbor pointed to Serna when cops arrived, and he had hands in his pockets
  • Officer Reagan Selman, who joined Bakersfield PD in 2015, fired seven rounds 
  • The grandfather died at the scene in California, and no gun was ever found, although police recovered 'a dark colored simulated woodgrain crucifix'
  • His son Rogelio Serna said his father exhibited signs of dementia, and would often take walks at night to tire himself out when he couldn't sleep 
  • 'My father was murdered,' said Rogelio Serna. 'He did not own a gun'

A police officer fatally shot a grandfather with dementia even though the 73-year-old was unarmed and made no threatening movements, police said Tuesday.

Officer Reagan Selman fired seven rounds in Bakersfield, California, around 12.30am Monday, killing Francisco Serna, who was pronounced dead at the scene.   

Police responded to reports that a man was brandishing a firearm in the neighborhood, and a witness pointed to Serna, who had both hands 'concealed inside his jacket', according to police.

But the elderly man was unarmed, and instead of a gun, police found 'a dark colored simulated woodgrain crucifix,' according to a police statement cited by USA Today.

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 Officer Reagan Selman (left) fired seven rounds around 12.30am Monday, and killed Francisco Serna (right) in Bakersfield, California even though the 73-year-old was unarmed, police said

Serna had five children and was a 'retired grandpa, just living life,' his son said. Family members said he exhibited signs of dementia, and took walks at night when he couldn't sleep

Selman (pictured) has been a member of the Bakersfield force since July 2015 after a stint in Afghanistan. He and six other cops were put on administrative leave pending an investigation

Serna's neighbor returned home with a friend and got out of the car in her driveway, only to find the 73-year-old standing behind her with his right hand hidden inside his jacket, according to police

Serna questioned her about living in the neighborhood, and told her to open the car door so he could have a look inside. The woman's friend complied.

The neighbor saw a 'dark brown or black handled object that she believed was a gun,' and ran inside the house, telling her husband to call the police. 

When the husband called 911, he told the dispatch without expressing any doubt that Serna was armed and brandishing a revolver, according to Assistant Police Chief Lyle Martin.

When Selman and several other officers arrived, the neighbor pointed at Serna and yelled, 'That's him!'

The 73-year-old walked towards them with both hands concealed inside his jacket, and did not follow orders to stop and show his hands, police said.

Selman fired seven rounds at the 73-year-old even though he did not lunge at the officers or exhibit any threatening behavior, Martin said.

Martin also said the police failed to utilize 'lower levels of force'.

Selman was the only officer who opened fire just 20 to 30 seconds after the neighbor yelled 'That's him!' and Serna was pronounced dead in the driveway on the same block of his home.

A search of the scene revealed Serna was not armed. Police found a 'dark colored crucufix' instead.

Selman and six other officers have been put on administrative leave pending an investigation, Martin said. 

Rogelio, above, who goes by Roy, posted a video on Facebook claiming police murdered his father, and pointed to the area where it happened

While the 73-year-old's son claimed he was shot nine times, Martin told reporters on Tuesday that Selman fired seven rounds. 

'Right across the street is where the police shot my father with nine bullets to his body, and my dad was not armed,' Rogelio Serna said in a video on Facebook. 


Rogelio wrote in another post that his father was in the early stages of dementia and would go on walks when he had trouble sleeping.

'My dad did not own a gun. He was a 73-year-old retired grandpa, just living life,' Rogelio Serna told the Times. 

'He should have been surrounded by family at old age, not surrounded by bullets,' he added.

Serna was a father of five, grandfather of 16 and great-grandfather of five.

He lived with his wife and one of his daughters. He worked at a cotton gin in California's Central Valley until he retired more than a decade ago.

Rogelio Serna said his father had been suffering from delusions and other early signs of dementia over the course of the last year, and his condition had deteriorated in the past month.

Police had visited the house twice before because his confused father activated a medical alarm, Rogelio Serna said.  

Serna's son paid tribute to his father and said: 'He was taken from us sooner than expected. Not from a sickness, but from senseless police'

Rogelio Serna filmed another video on Tuesday, alerting supporters to a candlelight vigil that was being held that day.

He paid tribute to his father and said: 'He was taken from us sooner than expected. Not from a sickness, but from senseless police.'

Rogelio Serna added that his father was not tasered, and said: 'I've got nothing against the police, but it's got to stop against innocent people. Enough is enough already. ' 

Police said they did not turn up a gun either in Serna's home or his car or the area where he was shot


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