No charges against officers involved in 2017 Hillyard shooting - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

No charges against officers involved in 2017 Hillyard shooting

Posted: Updated:
SPOKANE, Wash. -

The Spokane County Prosecutor's Office has determined that the two officers involved in a November 2017 shooting were justified in using deadly force while attempting to arrest James C. Danforth near Haven and Rowen in Hillyard.

Just after 6 p.m. on November 28, 2017, police responded to 2934 E. Rowan on a report of a domestic violence with a weapon call. Among those to arrive included Officer David Stone and Officer Brent Armstrong. They were riding the in same unmarked police SUV, which was equipped with two spotlights, emergency lights and siren. Both were dressed in police uniforms.

The 911 caller stated that a friend, later identified as Danforth, who had been staying at the address was drunk and refused to leave. The caller said Danforth was armed and had threatened to shoot her in the head. She also said Danforth had broken into the house and fired the gun in the house earlier that night. The caller's 33-year-old son was also at the house.

As Officers Stone and Armstrong  approached the home, the caller reported that Danforth had left on foot. A description was relayed to officer over the police radio.

When the officers arrived the caller and her son told them they had been threatened with the gun, and that he had fired the gun while in the house multiple times. Responding officers found gunshot holes in the ceiling and one at the top of the stairway. Empty shell casings were also found on the floor. Officers also found a broken window that looked large enough for a man to crawl through.

Officers searched for Danforth but couldn't find him. Both victims were worried Danforth would return with the gun, so officers agreed to stay while she and her son packed up some things to go elsewhere. Stone and Armstrong pulled up across the street to keep an eye on things.

Just before 8 o'clock, Officers Stone and Armstrong saw Danforth walking eastbound along the sidewalk toward the house wearing clothes that matched the description given by the victims. His hands were inside his cammo jacket pockets as he walked. Both officers told Danforth to show his hands. He did not. He then turned and fired at the officers through his jacket. The officers took cover and Danforth continued to walk toward the home.

At that point both officers shot at Danforth. He was struck and went to the ground. Officers saw a gun in Danforth's hand. Back up officers and medical personnel were called to the scene. Medics on scene worked on Danforth and he was taken to Sacred Heart, where he later died.

The prosecutor's office reports that under the circumstances it was reasonable for the two officers to use deadly force and therefore no criminal charges will be filed against Officer Stone and Officer Armstrong.

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