KANSAS CITY, Mo. — When a grand jury indicted Kansas City Police Detective Eric DeValkenaere they were able to review an interview with a man named Nickalass.
He wasn’t asked to testify at trial, so no one outside of the grand jury has ever heard what he saw. He describes himself as the only non-police witness to Cameron Lamb’s shooting death.
Nickalass was working on a car in the backyard of the home in the 4100 block of College Avenue when Lamb returned home December 3, 2019.
DeValkenaere and another officer were investigating whether Lamb had been chasing his ex-girlfriend’s car and came into the backyard.
“It’s sad because he’s 26 years old and he’s parking in his garage, you had no business here,” Nickalass said.
Nickalass said the other officer said they weren’t there for him but forced him to the ground. They yelled for Lamb to turn off his truck but he doesn’t think he could hear them over the engine.
“He picked his phone up as to make a phone call and they said he had a gun and started shooting,” Nickalass recalled.
Two years to the day, Nickalass said the events that unfolded in that backyard still haunt him.
“After they shot him he called my name because he knew I was there and it was sad because I couldn’t help him. I sat on the ground with my face in the dirt for 45 minutes. An ambulance never showed up, they could have saved his life.
Nickalass said he finds solace in the fact DeValkenaere was found guilty of second degree involuntary manslaughter and is now awaiting sentencing.
“Cuz can rest in peace, his spirit is free now, his spirit is free,” he said.
But like many who attended a vigil for Lamb Friday, he doesn’t understand why he had to watch him die.
“He wasn’t a violent man, they didn’t give him a chance.”
DeValkenaere can face anywhere from 3 to 7 years in prison when he’s sentenced in March, depending on whether the judge hands down consecutive or concurrent sentences. Lamb’s family said Friday the fight isn’t over until that sentencing, seeking justice in their son’s death.