Lawmen Cleared Of Fatal Shooting In Little Falls

Friday, April 22nd, 2011 at 6:22 am

Four law officers involved in the Dec. 30 fatal shooting of Patrick Jeske in Little Falls have been cleared of charges after a review conducted by Crow Wing County Attorney Don Ryan.

The Brainerd Dispatch reports that the review found the use of lethal force by the officers was justified and that no charges were warranted against any of the officers involved.

Officers who had discharged their weapons and who had been placed on paid administrative leave were Joseph Burgardt and Jonathan West of the Little Falls Police Department and Shawn Larsen and James Paschelke of the Morrison County Sheriff’s Department.

Law officers had responded to a call about a man who was armed and considered suicidal. When Jeske was stopped by officers he refused to put down his gun and, according to the memo, Jeske’s firearm fired “somewhat simultaneous” with the officers’ first shots. Jeske was pronounced dead at the scene.

Ryan wrote in his memo to the Morrison County attorney that it was clear from information from friends and family that Jeske intended to commit suicide. The Crow Wing County attorney wrote that at the time of the standoff Jeske overtly began moving into an apparent shooting position and law officers had no choice but to defend themselves.

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