SEATTLE - Body camera video captured the sudden death of a woman hit and killed by a Seattle police car as she was crossing the street. The investigation continues in the death of Jaahnavi Kandula, the Northeast University student who was killed on January 23, 2023.
King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office released the video from FOX 13’s public records request. It was first published by Publicola. FOX 13 is not showing most of the body camera video out of respect for Kandula’s family and due to the disturbing content.
Kevin Dave was the Seattle officer behind the wheel. Video recorded from his body camera showed Dave traveling in his patrol car, responding to a Priority One call. Chirping police sirens from his patrol car were heard, but the sirens were not continuous.
A loud roar from the engine was heard in the video as Dave’s speedometer showed an acceleration of up to 74 miles per hour. Within moments of reaching the top speed, Kandula was hit while at the intersection of Dexter Avenue North and Thomas Street.
The video showed Dave calling dispatch for help for a pedestrian struck. He soon began performing CPR on Kandula until several other first responders arrived at the scene.
Officials said Dave was initially on his way to an overdose that day. It was a Priority One call, which the department classified as the highest priority of calls. The call came in as an overdose.
Video showed him passing red lights at high speeds, slowing down slightly. Suddenly, Kandula was hit.
Dave was heard on the video telling a responding officer, "Lights were on. I was chirping the sirens…she was in the crosswalk. She saw me, she started running through the crosswalk. Slammed on my breaks. Started staying back where she should before crossing."
The Office of Police Accountability continues investigating whether Dave complied with department policy.
In the video, Dave was sitting in the passenger seat of another patrol car. He was heard saying, "I can have a hundred minutes. I could have…there’s nothing for me to do right now, but sit. And that is the f**king worst thing that…you just have to sit here. So many questions that are unanswered, so many questions."
The speed limit is 25 miles per hour on Dexter Avenue North, and 20 on Thomas Street.
In a Jan. 30 statement from Chief Adrian Diaz, he explained, "any serious traffic collision on City streets, whether officer-involved or not, is investigated as a potential criminal matter by the Traffic Collision Investigation Squad."
The statement said the detectives calculate, "vehicle operation and speed, lines of sight, lighting, roadway and traffic conditions, witness observations, any camera footage in the area, and any other material factors."
FOX 13 is waiting on a response from the police department after a request for comment from the chief or administration regarding the release of the body camera video. The department previously stated it cannot comment on the crash since the investigation remains open with OPA.
The county prosecutor’s office said it will make a decision on possible charges by early August.
While SPD remains tight-lipped on the investigation, more details have been revealed about Kandula.
Kandula came to Seattle from Bengaluru, India in 2021 to pursue a master's degree at Northeastern University, the college said. She was pursuing a Master of Science in Information Systems at the College of Engineering and was scheduled to graduate in December 2023.
"Jaahnavi demonstrated strong analytical abilities in large-scale data management and a passion for resolving technical issues. She worked as a Junior Executive at CAMTek Solutions for two years examining technical and artistic outputs. Additionally, she worked as an Administrative & Events Assistant on the Seattle campus, supporting event management and providing administrative help. Jaahnavi is remembered as a stellar student and a delightful and effervescent human being. She was a close friend to many and friends shared that they loved her bubbly laugh, sense of humor and infectious personality. Her loss will be felt deeply by students, staff, and faculty across campus," the college said in a letter to students in January.
A GoFundMe for her family said she left behind a single mother, who is a teacher in India. Kandu's family told FOX 13 that her mother's hopes and dreams have been cut short.
"We are truly heartbroken. Jaahnavi was a brilliant student with a bright future. Jaahnavi's smile was radiant, and her bubbly personality warmed the hearts of every person she came in contact with," the family said, in part, in a statement.