A North Las Vegas police SWAT officer who shot a man while trying to disarm him early Saturday was identified Monday.
Jeffrey Pollard, 40, has been placed on routine administrative leave pending an investigation into the death of Fernando Giovanni Sauceda, 32.
Police said Pollard and his partner were patrolling a neighborhood near Fifth Street and Carey Avenue when they spotted a group of men firing guns to celebrate New Year's Eve in the front yard of a home at 609 E. Glendale Ave.
As they walked up to the house, they saw several people outside with guns.
Police said the officers gave orders to the people to drop their weapons, and all complied except for one. That man, Sauceda, pointed a gun within arm's length of Pollard, who brushed it aside with his hand and tried to disarm him. During the physical altercation, Pollard fired several times, police said.
Sauceda's family disputed the police version of events. They said that the officers did not identify themselves and that Sauceda didn't know they were police.
Sgt. Tim Bedwell, a police spokesman, said the fact that some people at the scene complied with officers' commands was evidence that it was clear who the officers were.
Pollard has been with the department since 1997.