Investigators Say Knife Found at Location of Officer-Involved Shooting

November 09, 2017 02:24 PM

Investigators say they have recovered a knife at the location of an officer-involved shooting in northern Wisconsin.


Family members say 14-year-old Jason Ike Pero died after Wednesday's shooting on the Bad River Reservation.  The family had questioned whether Pero was carrying a knife, but the Wisconsin Department of Justice's Division of Criminal Investigation said Thursday that a knife was found at the scene.

The Ashland County Sheriff's Office says deputies responded to a report of a male walking around Maple Street carrying a knife. At about 11:48 a.m., which as eight minutes after the initial 911 call, a deputy fired a shot, striking Pero.  He was pronounced dead at the Ashland hospital.

Pero's grandfather, Alan Pero, described Jason as someone who, "never had one mean bone in his body."

Jason's mother, Holly Gauthier also spoke to Eyewitness News saying Jason, "was a big teddy bear", and "everybody loved him." She added that he loved his family.  

She says there is, "no reason you can justify shooting a 14-year-old boy." She added her and her family are seeking justice for Jason. She says she believes he was murdered.

Jason was home sick from school on Wednesday, according to his mother, Holly. She says his dad picked Jason up from school and dropped him off at his grandparents' house.

Alan Pero said that according to doctors, there were two shots that hit Jason, one in the heart, and one in the right shoulder.

Jason's mother, Holly says she does not know why Jason was outside, or why he was shot, and says authorities haven't told her anything.

Bad River Tribal Government issued a news release Wednesday saying it would keep the community informed as information becomes available.

"The Tribal Council is deeply saddened and troubled by today’s event, and they offer their condolences to the family at this time. This is an extremely hard day for everyone, in times like this the community must come together, and help each other heal," the Bad River Tribal Government said in a news release.

Support was available for community members Wednesday night, and there were also people at schools on Thursday to support the students.

The deputy was not injured.  A DOJ spokesperson said the deputy has been placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard in such cases.

The DCI said it aims to turn over investigative reports to the Ashland County District Attorney’s Office within 30 days.  It said the sheriff's office is fully cooperating in the investigation.


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