BALDWIN COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — Cell phone video records the final moments of Russ Mallette’s life early Monday morning. At this point, he had been shot twice by Gulf Shores police. “Mr. Mallette received two gunshot wounds,” says Major Crimes Unit investigator Lt. Rex Bishop, “neither of which were life-threatening or fatal.”
Mallette had climbed to the eighth floor of Ocean House II condominium after investigators say he ran from a traffic stop, fought with the responding officer and got his service weapon and then fired at least twice at the officer. According to witnesses Mallette jumped from the eighth floor. “I watched him walk down to the actual handrail on that top stairwell and just kind of jump over, head first right over the rail,” a witness told News Five.
“The cause of death is listed as blunt force trauma from the fall,” says Bishop.
Investigators will have to wait for a more detailed autopsy report. “Toxicology is not in. They can take weeks or months to return.”
As the investigation continues, video will play an important role. “We have obtained video from people that videoed it as it was going on their phones. We also have video from the body-worn cameras that we are looking at. we have video from the dash-cam units involved.”
While the initial autopsy report lists a cause of death, it doesn’t list a manner of death. That will be determined once the investigation is complete.
Three Gulf Shores Police officers remain on administrative leave pending an internal investigation by their department.