HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A preliminary review indicates police were justified last month when they fatally shot a man suspected of killing a Pennsylvania state trooper, a prosecutor said Friday while disclosing no new information about how the shooting occurred.
Huntingdon County District Attorney David Smith said he is not sure when his review of facts surrounding the killings of Trooper Landon Weaver and suspect Jason Robison will be complete.
"We recognize the highly sensitive nature of these circumstances and the public's desire to have answers and action in a timely fashion," Smith said. "It is equally important as a matter of truth and justice that we get it right."
State police have said Robison shot Weaver in Robison's home in Hesston, in rural central Pennsylvania, on Dec. 30 while the trooper was questioning Robison about the possible violation of a protective order.
Police have said they tracked Robison, 32, to a nearby mobile home the next day and shot him after he made threats and did not comply with commands. They have not answered questions about the number of shots fired, whether the trooper who shot Robison was put on leave, what threats were made or what commands he ignored.
Weaver, 23, had been a trooper for about a year. He was married in June, about the time he started patrolling out of the Huntingdon station.
"Based on my preliminary review of the evidence, I am satisfied the actions taken by the member of the Pennsylvania State Police were justified," Smith said. "However, any final prosecutorial decision, and/or justification regarding the use of deadly force, will be made when our office has reviewed all of the evidence from the investigation."
He said investigators from outside the local state police station have photographed, mapped and processed both shooting scenes and witnesses have been interviewed.
Smith said he has not received information from the two autopsies, nor has he been provided with results of ballistics analysis. Search warrants issued in the investigation were sealed for two months.
An arrest warrant issued for Robison before he was shot said he texted his son's mother after Weaver was killed, saying he "killed the cop" and "shot him twice in the head."
Robison's mother, Sherry Robison, told investigators she saw her son pull a black gun from his pants before he stepped into an adjacent room and she heard a "pop." She said she saw Weaver fall face-down into the kitchen, bleeding.