'ER' Actress Vanessa Marquez Was Shot Dead by Police in 'Lawful Self-Defense,' Says DA, As Bodycam Footage Released

Two police officers acted in "lawful self-defense" in the fatal shooting of former ER actress Vanessa Marquez, who was shot and killed in her home in South Pasadena, California, in 2018, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office has ruled.

Marquez, who was 49 at the time of her death, played nurse Wendy Goldman in the first three seasons of ER on NBC, appearing alongside George Clooney and Julianna Margulies.

The district attorney's office said in a February 25 memo that South Pasadena Police Department officers Gilberto Carrillo and Christopher Perez will not face any charges over the shooting and the case has now been closed.

The South Pasadena Police Department also released body camera footage of the fatal incident that took place on August 30, 2018, after the officers attended a welfare check on Marquez.

Marquez was shot multiple times by the officers after pulling what appeared to be a handgun on them, the memo from the district attorney's office said. It was later determined to be an "all-black BB gun resembling a Beretta 92FS firearm."

In the body camera footage, one of the officers can be heard saying "drop the gun," after seeing Marquez in possession of what he believed to be a weapon. The officers then evacuate the upstairs of the apartment of paramedics who had attended the scene and retreat to the bottom of the stairs. One of the officers says: "Vanessa, drop whatever is in your hand right now."

Marquez appears to descend the stairs brandishing a gun, prompting Carrillo and Perez to fire multiple rounds. The body camera footage shows a zoomed-in image of Marquez holding a weapon, which is again visible moments later on the stairs by Marquez's unconscious body.

The memo notes that Carrillo and Perez had reason to suspect the gun was real after Carrillo saw Marquez in possession of it in her bedroom, saying this "had the desired effect of causing him to fear for his life. Marquez perpetuated Carrillo's belief that the gun was real by not disclosing the handgun was a BB gun."

The memo continues: "From the perspective of Carrillo and Perez, Marquez was armed with a firearm and acting erratically. Despite efforts to communicate in conjunction with fire commands, Marquez remained silent. She held the handgun in a manner that conveyed a readiness to use it and descended the stairs with that apparent purpose. Carrillo saw the gun pointed in the direction of the officers and Perez described a situation in which Marquez could have 'opened fire' on them in an instant."

"Both officers, in that moment, actually and reasonably feared for their lives," said the memo, adding that their response was "justified."

Marquez's family filed a $20 million wrongful death lawsuit against the city of South Pasadena last year.

Attorneys for Marquez's family have been contacted for comment.

Vanessa Marquez ER actress
Vanessa Marquez as Wendy Goldman on 'ER.' NBC
'ER' Actress Vanessa Marquez Was Shot Dead by Police in 'Lawful Self-Defense,' Says DA, As Bodycam Footage Released | U.S.