(BOULDER, Colo.) — The police officer who shot and injured a mass shooting suspect at a Boulder, Colorado, grocery store was justified in his actions and won’t face criminal charges, Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty said in a new report.
The suspect, Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, was shot in the leg and taken into custody after the March 22 shooting that killed 10 at the King Soopers grocery store.
Alissa allegedly started shooting in the grocery store parking lot before running inside and opening fire, according to prosecutors. The first officers arrived within minutes and went into the store, where Boulder police officer Eric Talley was shot and killed, according to prosecutors.
Boulder officer Richard Steidell — who shot and injured Alissa — said when he arrived at the scene, he saw two victims dead outside, and when he and his fellow officers went inside the King Soopers, he saw Talley with devastating injuries, according to a report released Thursday by Dougherty.
As Steidell approached Talley, he said he saw someone with a long gun pointed at the officers, the report said. At least two rounds were then fired at the officers, the report said.
Steidell returned fire with one or two shots and “then waited for the shooter to reemerge,” the report said.
When the suspect moved into Steidell’s view, the officer said he fired about five to 10 rounds, the report said. Investigators later determined Steidell fired eight shots, the report said.
Steidell was “entirely justified in using deadly physical force” because he knew the suspect “posed an immediate threat to himself, his fellow officers, and civilians still inside the store,” Dougherty’s report said.
“And, because Steidell fired down an empty shopping aisle and toward the back wall of the store, his use of force did not create a substantial risk of injury” to people other than Alissa, the report added.
Charges against Alissa include 10 counts of first-degree murder and numerous counts of attempted murder. He has not entered a plea.
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