DOUGLAS COUNTY -- The officers involved in the shooting of a 19-year-old man followed department policy and state standards when they shot an unarmed man in a Superior on October 5, 2018, according to a press release from Superior Police Chief Nicholas Alexander.
(Press Release) -- The WI Department of Justice (DOJ) provided a copy of their investigation to the Superior Police Department and Douglas County District Attorney’s Office on Thursday, November 15th. The DOJ conducted an exhaustive investigation into the matter and provided over a hundred pages of documentation. The WI DOJ does not draw conclusions but documents the facts and evidence so that the District Attorney can make the final determination regarding the justification of the use of force. The Douglas County District Attorney’s should be contacted directly for information on the status of that review.
The report provided by the DOJ cannot be released by the Superior Police Department. The WI DOJ is the custodian of that record.
I have reviewed the report from the DOJ and it is my interpretation the officers involved acted within department policy, state law, and consistent with use of force training as mandated by the WI DOJ Division of Training and Standards. All three officers have returned to work.
It has already been released that body worn camera footage confirms that Mr. Farmer claimed to have a firearm and threatened to shoot the officers. Mr. Farmer indicated the officers were going to die or he was. The DOJ report confirms these facts. The officers’ accounts state that Mr. Farmer then aggressively removed a shiny metal object and pointed it at them. The officers perceived this to be a gun and responded to this imminent threat of death or great bodily harm by firing their service weapons. All three officers on scene fired and Mr. Farmer was struck six times. Once Mr. Farmer was incapacitated, the officers involved, and other responding officers rendered life saving measures until emergency medical services arrived on scene.
Despite Mr. Farmer’s multiple claims to have a firearm on his person, a search of the scene did not result in a firearm being located. A large silver colored adjustable wrench was located and it is believed that was the object Mr. Farmer pointed at the officers.
This will remain an open investigation until a decision is made by the District Attorney so no further details will be released at this time. The Police Department will not have any additional information until the District Attorney’s Office releases its findings.
Chief Nicholas Alexander