Police release bodycam video of shooting at U of I that injured student

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Champaign County Sheriff's Office released bodycam video of a police-involved shooting at the University of Illinois - Champaign-Urbana which injured a student from Flossmoor.

The shooting happened on July 12 in a residential area of campus that includes student housing.

Because of the angle and distance from which bodycam video was shot, the footage does not show 23-yaer-old Sam Applebaum pointing a weapon at police officers, which he is alleged to have done in the moments leading up to the shooting. It does, however, depict the multiple verbal warnings he was given before being fired upon by police.

Officers said they were called to the scene by Applebaum himself, who allegedly made a false report of a man with a semi-automatic weapon in a residential area near campus.

Officers are heard issuing several verbal warnings before they open fire, telling Applebaum to drop the gun.

After Applebaum was struck, the deputy and officers rushed to his side as he lay face-down on the ground with a single gunshot wound to his leg. They quickly realized his weapon wasn't capable of deadly force.

Speaking shortly after the bodycam video was released, Sheriff Dan Walsh said the video shows officers were in the right and praised them for immediately rendering first aid.

"These are the things they're trained to do and these guys all had the presence of mind in a very tense situation to do what we want them to do," Walsh said.

The clip also reveals what may have been the motive behind Applebaum's alleged false report to police. A voice that is presumed to Applebaum's can be heard talking to police while he's still on the ground.

"I was just trying to f****** kill myself," the voice says.

Speaking to ABC7 over Skype Tuesday, Applebaum's defense attorney would not confirm that the voice on the video is his client's, but admits his client is troubled.

"Everyone wants to see him have a healthy and prosperous future. Clearly something is causing him some difficulties," said attorney Tom Bruno.

Applebaum has been charged with disorderly conduct for allegedly placing the false 911 call. He pled not guilty and is free on bond, which requires him to cooperate with mental health specialists. His attorney would not say if he had been evaluated.

The case remains under investigation by Illinois State Police.
Copyright © 2022 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.