Officer involved shooting ruled justified
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - The Districts Attorney’s Office ruled a Manitou Springs officer involved shooting justified.
The DA’s office says 22 shots were fired by officers after the suspect, Wilford Deweese, opened fire at them.
This all happened April 11. Police we called to the Royal Tavern after employees said Deweese pointed a gun at a bartender. Employees say they believe he was intoxicated.
Manitou Springs Officers Levi Hoover and Jeffery Schuelke found Deweese on Manitou Avenue.
According to the DA’s report, Deweese repeatedly ignored the officers request to discuss the matter calmly. The report goes on to say that El Paso County deputy Daniel LeBaron confirmed with the Royal Tavern that a handgun had been seen. Deputy Ronnie Hancock, also with El Paso County, reportedly arrived on scene with a K9 unit.
The DA says the officials spent nearly 20 minutes trying to de-escalate the situation. Deputy Hancock reportedly telling Deweese he would release the K9, named Jinx, he did not follow instructions.
Deweese kept reaching for his waistband, according to the DA’s report.
Jinx was released and the DA says Deweese pulled a handgun from his pocket and fatally shot the dog. He then fired at officers.
All four officials returned fire.
The DA’s report says life saving efforts were started immediately after the encounter. Deweese died on scene.
Body cam footage was pulled from all officials involved. The DA’s office says after reviewing all the evidence, the deadly use of force was justified under Colorado law.
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