CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — The district attorney's office will not file charges against six Tennessee police officers who fatally shot a black man after authorities say he threatened a child and an officer.
Hamilton County District Attorney General Neal Pinkston said in a news release Wednesday that the officers were justified in the deadly shooting of Javario Eagle, who was armed and accompanied by a child on Dec. 12.
The 24-year-old father ignored numerous orders to surrender, according to police, and then grabbed a gun and pointed it at an officer.
Pinkston's review didn't examine whether the actions followed police department protocol, said Hamilton County District Attorney's Office spokeswoman Melydia Clewell.
Officers Lorin Johnston, Allen Griffith, Tim McFarland, Mitchell Moss, Christopher Palmer and Jacques Weary were put on paid leave after the shooting.
The police department will now conduct an internal administrative review to check whether officers followed department policy during the shooting, said police spokesman Kyle Miller.
On Dec. 12, Chattanooga dispatchers received a call from someone making "unusual demands," authorities said. Officers responded to a residence and the caller was later discovered to be Eagle. Eagle went in and out of his house several times, each time armed, and then left the home a final time with a knife and handgun, said Police Chief Fred Fletcher. Eagle had a 4-year-old girl with him.
Officers tried to coax the girl away from Eagle, Fletcher said, and an officer left cover to grab the girl once she moved away from her father. At that point, Eagle "aggressively moved toward" the officer and the child, and multiple officers began to shoot.
According to Pinkston, that aggressive movement was Eagle pulling his pistol.