US attorney to monitor probe of Detroit man's fatal shooting

AP News
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Posted: Apr 28, 2015 7:37 PM
US attorney to monitor probe of Detroit man's fatal shooting

DETROIT (AP) — U.S. authorities will monitor a Detroit police investigation into the fatal shooting of a man by a federal agent who was part of a team seeking him on a warrant, the U.S. attorney in Detroit said Tuesday.

An autopsy has determined that Terrance Kellom, 20, died of multiple gunshot wounds following Monday's confrontation with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent in a home on Detroit's west side. Detroit police Sgt. Cassandra Lewis said investigators were told Kellom was armed with a hammer, though Kellom's father has disputed that.

"Police work sometimes requires use of deadly force, but officers may use only as much force as is reasonable under the circumstances," U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade said in a statement. "In a situation like this, it is important to protect the rights of both the deceased and the officer. Therefore, we are closely monitoring the investigation."

Kellom's death comes amid a national debate over police conduct, particularly toward black men, since black 18-year-old Michael Brown was killed by a white policeman in Ferguson, Missouri last August. Violence erupted in Baltimore this week over a black man who died there in police custody. Kellom was black, as is the ICE agent who shot him.

The agent is a seven-year veteran of ICE and spent 12 years with Detroit police. He has "no history of adverse personnel actions," ICE spokesman Khaalid Walls said in an email. The agent is on administrative leave during the investigation into the shooting, which is agency policy, Walls said.

Detroit police would not comment Tuesday on Kellom's slaying.

"I don't understand why my son was executed," Kevin Kellom, the father of Terrance Kellom, told about 200 people gathered for a rally and protest march. "My son wasn't hiding. He wasn't running. I want nothing but justice. I want justice. I'm going to get justice."

Neighbor Bobbie Davis said she wants peaceful protests and a proper investigation of the shooting.

"Detroit is on a comeback. We don't need no setbacks," Davis said, referring to Detroit's emergence from bankruptcy. "We're not going to burn down our city. We're going to build up our city."

Dawud Walid, head of the Council for American Islamic Relations in Michigan, said protesters "don't want another Ferguson, another Baltimore taking place here in the city of Detroit."

The marchers chanted, "Black lives matter," ''No justice, no peace" and, "Hands up don't shoot."

Police Chief James Craig assured his relatives and people in the neighborhood that the investigation would be thorough and transparent. The department is planning a Wednesday community meeting at a nearby church, Lewis said.

The Wayne County prosecutor's office has been notified of the shooting, but no paperwork seeking charges was submitted by early Tuesday, said prosecutor's spokeswoman Maria Miller.

ICE said Monday that Kellom was wanted on armed robbery and weapons charges. He was listed as a probation absconder on the state Corrections website. Kellom was sentenced to probation in December 2013 after pleading guilty to an October 2013 attempted carrying a concealed weapon case.

The fugitive apprehension team was looking for Kellom at his father's home about 1 p.m. Monday.

The agent was part of the Detroit Fugitive Apprehension Team, which also is made up of Detroit officers. The ICE Office of Professional Responsibility also is reviewing the case.