Compean chose not to file a complaint against the suspect which made people question if he was ever really threatened.
Of course they didn't know the identity of the suspect, and he had fled back into Mexico, so they had little reason to believe that a complaint would be anything but worthless paperwork.
Compean collected some of his brass, and has another agent go look for the rest and dispose of it.
This is the one thing that is really hard to explain away and would seem to indicate a cover-up.
I suspect that's what got them convicted by the jury.
Ramos, who actually fired the shot that hit the suspect came on the scene after Compean had already started firing, and didn't try and collect any of his brass. He however didn't report the incident.
Failing to report the incident is what got the DOJ investigating the incident once they got a complaint by the suspect that he had been shot without justification. They had a suspect who had been shot with no report of any agents firing shots. Can't really blame them for investigating, but the did seem more than a little overzealous after they decided to investigate.
Compean and Ramos did do things wrong despite what the author of the article claims. However, if they had reported the incident there wouldn't have been a case to prosecute.
Their failure to report the incident and preserve the scene could have been handled through administrative action rather than criminal prosecution, but it did seem like Compean covered up what had happened...
If they had simply reported the shooting and filed a report, they would have never been prosecuted, even if the shooting wasn't justified because it would have been the the suspect's word against theirs.
It was because of the evidence of a cover-up that they were able to be prosecuted, because that destroyed their credibility.
Okay, I didn’t realize what a big deal it was to have the incident reported. I heard that supervisors were on scene almost immediately and that they therefore didn’t have to file a report. But why would picking up the brass be an issue? They know he fired shots. Is it just a crime scene thing?