Widow of man shot, killed by ex-Mesa police officer speaks about verdict, her family

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Laney Sweet spoke for the first time after an ex-Mesa police officer was acquitted of murder charges for shooting and killing her husband, Daniel Shaver. (Source: CBS News) Laney Sweet spoke for the first time after an ex-Mesa police officer was acquitted of murder charges for shooting and killing her husband, Daniel Shaver. (Source: CBS News)
"It took people watching my husband die a very horrible inhumane death for people to care," said Laney Sweet. (Source: CBS News) "It took people watching my husband die a very horrible inhumane death for people to care," said Laney Sweet. (Source: CBS News)
Philip "Mitch" Brailsford Philip "Mitch" Brailsford was found not guilty of second-degree murder last week. (Source: Pool) Philip "Mitch" Brailsford Philip "Mitch" Brailsford was found not guilty of second-degree murder last week. (Source: Pool)
Officers say they believed Shaver, who pleaded with officers not to kill him, was reaching for a gun. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Officers say they believed Shaver, who pleaded with officers not to kill him, was reaching for a gun. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(3TV/CBS 5) -

The first time since the verdict, the widow of the Texas man who was shot and killed by a Mesa police officer spoke about the acquittal of the officer of murder charges.

Philip "Mitch" Brailsford was found not guilty of second-degree murder last week after he shot and killed Daniel Shaver at a Mesa hotel in January 2016.

[READ MORE: Ex-Mesa police officer who shot, killed unarmed man found not guilty of murder]

Following the acquittal, graphic body camera video of Shaver's final moments was released.

[READ MORE: Mesa police release dramatic body camera video following Brailsford verdict]

"It took people watching my husband die a very horrible inhumane death for people to care," said Laney Sweet, Shaver's widow. "I watched my husband die, watched him beg for his life."

[WARNING: Graphic raw video shows deadly Mesa police shooting]

She was shocked by the verdict as well.

"I felt slapped in the face. I felt betrayed by every single juror... Just don't understand how anybody could watch that video and then say not guilty, that this is justified that Daniel deserved this and that Philip Brailsford doesn't deserve to be held accountable for his actions," Sweet said.

[RAW VIDEO: Verdict read in murder trial of ex-Mesa police officer]

Brailsford said he made a split second decision after he thought Shaver was reaching for a gun when police were trying to take him into custody and was refusing police commands.

[READ MORE: Former Mesa police officer on trial for murder testifies]

"I understand that officers have hard jobs. I think that this goes back to the Mesa Police Department's training if this is really how they're trained," Sweet said.

Officers later learned Shaver did not have a gun and only found two pellet rifles related to his pest-control job in his room.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Murder trial of ex-Mesa officer Philip 'Mitch' Brailsford]

Sweet said the hardest day of her life was telling her daughters their father wasn't coming home. On Monday, she received a phone call from her 8-year-old's school.

"Yesterday she tried choking herself while she was at school and told her friend that she wanted to die. So I spent all last evening with her in the hospital getting her psychiatric help," Sweet said.

When asked what her daughter said to her when she saw her, Sweet said, "She told me that she wanted to be with her dad."

Sweet said important information was not included in the trial like Brailsford's past record of excessive force.

[READ MORE: Wife of man shot, killed by police at Mesa hotel files $35M notice of claim]

She's filed a wrongful death civil suit and has called on the Department of Justice to investigate.

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