Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Use of Deadly Force Was Legal, Says Mecklenburg DA

Andrew Murray, the District Attorney for Mecklenburg County, submitted a letter to Chief of Police Rodney Monroe on Monday stating that CMPD officer A.J. Holzhauer was within the law when he used deadly force while arresting a Charlotte man last month.

Michale Deangelo Laney, 28, was killed on July 2nd when Charlotte-Mecklenburg police were attempting to arrest him. Officer Shields attempted to pull Laney over while he was riding his red scooter. CMPD had been looking for the suspect of a shooting / attempted robbery on the 25th of June, in which the suspect was riding a scooter with the same description. Laney did not pull over but attempted to flee on the scooter.

The chase ended at a home on Crestview Drive, where he was shot in the head while struggling to get away after the two officers on scene determined Laney was armed with a loaded handgun in his waistband, which he was attempting to reach.

The District Attorney's letter states that because Officer Shields feared for his life and that of his fellow police officer, that his use of deadly force was legal.

After the incident, the victim of the shooting / robbery on June 25 confirmed that Laney was in fact the man that had committed the crime. The written and verbal stories of both officers Shields and Holzhauer as well as Laney's girlfriend, Sara Ramey, were all consistent with each other and corroborated with evidence that the officers only shot Laney as a last resort and out of fear for their lives.

The letter from the District Attorney concluded by stating that Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Departement would not press charges against officers Shields or Holzhauer.