The Anderson County District Attorney’s Office has completed its investigation into the officer-involved shooting that left two Indiana residents dead in February, according to WYSH Radio in Clinton.
The investigation determined that Anderson County deputies Jonathan Bryant and J.D. Powell acted appropriately in the Feb. 29 incident, which began with a gas theft in Lake City, WYSH said.
Killed in the exchange of gunfire at the intersection of Old Emory Road and Blockhouse Valley Road were Shanna Lee Richardson and Michael Baker of Indiana.
The gas theft led to a search for the vehicle and Deputy Bryant came across it a few hours after the theft. Baker, who was driving the truck, refused to stop, WYSH said. As the chase continued, at least one shot was allegedly fired by the fleeing suspects.
The truck, which had been reported stolen, crashed at the intersection and both Richardson and Baker fired at deputies, prompting them to return fire, WYSH reported. Both of the suspects died as a result of the incident.
Drug tests on Baker and Richardson revealed the presence of illegal drugs, including so-called bath salts, which have been associated with irrational and violent behavior, WYSH said.
While finding that the deputies acted appropriately in their use of deadly force, the probe by the DA’s office also found that Deputy Bryant should be commended for his tactical performance, and Deputy Powell should be commended for responding to a call from a fellow deputy who needed his help even though he was off-duty, WYSH said.
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