Court: UP Officer Has Immunity in Lawsuit over Shooting

Court: UP Officer Has Immunity in Lawsuit over Shooting

July 20, 2017 10:09 AM

MUNISING, Mich. (AP) - A federal appeals court has ruled in favor of an Upper Peninsula police officer who fatally shot an unarmed man after a car chase that reached 100 mph.

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Timothy Mitchell's family sued Munising Officer Justin Schlabach, saying he used excessive force at the end of a chase in 2014.

But in a 2-1 decision Wednesday, the appeals court said the officer had "probable cause" to believe Mitchell was an immediate threat after the man drove into a ditch. The court says dash-cam video shows Mitchell appeared hostile and took "long, purposeful steps" toward Schlabach.

Mitchell was shot twice during a confrontation that lasted less than 20 seconds.

In dissent, Judge Karen Nelson Moore says jurors might conclude that the officer could have chosen another way to subdue Mitchell.


Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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