Friday, June 05, 2015

TOP STORY >> Fatal shooting ruled justified

Lonoke County Prosecuting Attorney Chuck Graham decided, as expected, that the fatal shooting by law enforcement of a parolee in Cabot on May 19 was justified.

A Lonoke County sheriff’s deputy failed to find the pistol that Jonathan McIntosh had hidden before he was placed in the back of a sheriff’s squad car.

The 35-year-old was picked up at 905 E. Main St. for violating his parole. He may have been able to maneuver his cuffed hands from behind his back to the front of his body, allowing him to grab the gun and shoot at officers.

Sheriff John Staley and two parole officers from the Arkansas Department of Community Correction returned fire, killing McIntosh.

Graham said no legal action will be taken because it was evident that the sheriff and the parole officers reasonably feared for their safety, as is required by law when deadly force is used.

In a letter to State Police Lt. Stacie Rhoads, Graham wrote, “McIntosh was using deadly physical force upon them and their lives were in danger. McIntosh concealed a weapon under multiple layers of clothing in his groin area so that it could not be found (before) a pat-down search. The officers reacted quickly and decisively and had no other means of non-deadly force to diffuse the situation in which McIntosh was firing indiscriminately and acting with wanton disregard for human life.

Agent Jonathan Stewart, Agent Michael Blake and Sheriff Staley were forced to use deadly force upon McIntosh, and they were justified under Arkansas law to defend themselves.”