The dramatic video, released by the King County Prosecutor’s Office, shows Meis charging at Ybarra, hitting him in the face with pepper spray and then taking him down to the ground, pulling the gun from his hands.
The video starts with Ybarra, armed with a long gun, walking into the building and pacing around. He then shoots a woman as she walks down the stairs. The woman stumbles off as Meis appears, stopping the gunman.
You can watch the video below (Warning: Graphic):
Ybarra is accused of killing one student and injuring two others in the June 5, 2014, attack at Otto Miller Hall, according to The Seattle Times.
Paul Lee, a 19-year-old freshman, was killed. A 24-year-old man and a 19-year-old woman were seriously injured.
Aaron Ybarra, then 26, had just opened fire before he was taken down, police said. He had a long history of mental illness and was not a student at the small Christian school, authorities said.
An edited video shows the encounter between Ybarra and Meis up close:
Meis was hailed as a hero after the shooting and the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation named him as one of its recipients the Citizen Honors Program in 2015.
Meis issued a statement after the shooting, describing what happened in his own words:
Words cannot come close to expressing the tragedy that occurred this past week on our campus. Like everyone else, I would hear of these horrible events on the news, but go home knowing that it could never happen to us. On Thursday, my life changed. I was thrown into a life and death situation, and through God’s grace I was able to stop the attacker and walk away unharmed. As I try to return to a normal life in the aftermath of this horrible event, I pray above all things for strength for the victims and their families. While my experience left me in physical shock, I know that many people are dealing with much greater grief than I have experienced, and in honesty I probably would not be able to handle it myself right now if I had personally known the victims.
I know that I am being hailed as a hero, and as many people have suggested I find this hard to accept. I am indeed a quiet and private individual; while I have imagined what it would be like to save a life I never believed I would be put in such a situation. It touches me truly and deeply to read online that parents are telling their children about me and telling them that real heroes do exist.
However, what I find most difficult about this situation is the devastating reality that a hero cannot come without tragedy. In the midst of this attention, we cannot ignore that a life was taken from us, ruthlessly and without justification or cause. Others were badly injured, and many more will carry this event with them the rest of their lives. Nonetheless, I would encourage that hate be met with love. When I came face to face with the attacker, God gave me the eyes to see that he was not a faceless monster, but a very sad and troubled young man. While I cannot at this time find it within me to forgive his crime, I truly desire that he will find the grace of God and the forgiveness of our community.
I would like to truly thank the responders who secured the building and the medical staff who looked after myself and those who were injured. After being in this situation myself, it is even harder to imagine what it would be like to have a job where one’s life is willingly put on the line every day. To our police, emergency responders, and armed forces, you have my greatest respect.
He graduated from Seattle Pacific in 2014, and received an enormous ovation at graduation:
Ybarra is facing charges of premeditated first-degree murder, two counts of attempted first-degree murder and second-degree assault. His trial is set to begin in September 2016 and his attorney has indicated in court papers that he plans to pursue an insanity defense, according to The Seattle Times.
The video was released against the will of county officials and Seattle Pacific University, which have said it would cause trauma if made public. The King County commissioner’s office barred the release of the video through a restraining order, and argued the TV stations in Seattle were trying to use the graphic video of the shooting to boost ratings, according to The Times. The ruling was later overturned by an appellate court, the newspaper reports.