SPOKANE, Wash.— The Spokane County Prosecutor’s Office ruled that two Spokane Police Officers who shot a man armed with a knife in May were justified in their use of deadly force even though the victim survived his injuries.
Officials said officers Ronald Van Tassel, Julian Cedeno and Lt. Dave McCabe shot Terrance Wallette on May 7, 2017.
Prosecutors said the officers were justified in their use of deadly force because Wallette presented a serious and immediate threat to the officers and citizens in the area.
According to police reports, Wallette had checked in at the Emergency Room at Holy Family Hospital as a possible overdose. Reports continues to say Wallette became agitated and pulled a knife in front of an ER worker. Wallette then fled the hospital in a blue Dodge Intrepid.
Police officials said later that evening Spokane Police Lieutenant Dave McCabe saw the Dodge run a stop sign. Lt. McCabe pursued the vehicle for a short time, but it quickly ended for safety reasons.
Reports said McCabe was driving south on Perry and when he saw the car stopped in the road just south of Dalton. McCabe recognized Wallette, who gotten out of the car and was wearing a hospital gown with pants underneath. Officials said McCabe yelled at Wallette to come to him. Wallette ignored the command and ran away. A foot chase ensued during which McCabe observed Wallette threaten two persons at a residence at 1327 East Dalton.
Authorities said Wallette was told multiple times to stop and get on the ground. Additional officers soon arrived on scene. According to officials, Wallette continued to disobey commands, stated that he was not going back to prison, and began to cut himself in the stomach and left wrist.
Reports said Wallette continues to ignore requests from the officers to drop knife. The officers first attempted to defuse the situation by deploying a taser. According to reports, Wallette continued to disobey the officers. Reports continued to explain that Wallette raised the knife and began to move toward the officers.
Officials said officer Van Tassel fired a single shot at Wallette. Wallette then turned toward Van Tassel and McCabe, again, with the knife raised. Additional shots were then fired by Lt. McCabe and Officer Cedeno.
Police officials said Wallette fell to the ground, and the officers moved in to perform medical aid. Medics also arrived on the scene and treated Wallette. Wallette was transported to Sacred Heart Medical Center where he was treated. Reports said Wallette survived his injuries.