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November 29, 2007

Austin sergeant fired over fatal shooting

The sergeant has said he shot after the man appeared to be drawing weapon in a June encounter.

By Tony Plohetski
The Austin American-Statesman

AUSTIN, Texas - Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo on Wednesday fired an officer who fatally shot a man during a foot pursuit outside an East Austin nightclub in June, saying in a blistering 10-page report that Sgt. Michael Olsen unnecessarily fired a second shot into the man's back as he lay facedown before giving him a chance to comply with an order to show his hands.

Acevedo said in the disciplinary memo that Olsen repeatedly demonstrated poor judgment, showed a lack of common sense and failed to follow his training in the moments before the June 3 shooting, including not waiting for backup to investigate whether Kevin Brown had a gun outside Chester's nightclub on East 12th Street. He said it was conceivable that the first shot that struck Brown, hitting him in the back, may have been within Police Department policy but that Brown did not pose an immediate threat after he fell to the ground.

"The totality of the circumstances do not justify or support a reasonable belief that an ordinary or prudent officer would act or think in a similar way that Sergeant Olsen did," Acevedo said in the memo. "Consequently, when Sergeant Olsen made the decision to shoot at Mr. Brown after he was wounded and lying face down on the ground, that use of deadly force was not justifiable."

Full story: Austin sergeant fired over fatal shooting

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