A grand jury today found no criminal wrongdoing in the January 31 police shooting of Anthony McDowell, a Gresham veteran who was reportedly suicidal.
According to partial accounts of the shooting so far—grand jury transcripts could emerge as soon as next week—McDowell's wife had called police that night and reported her husband was suicidal. A Gresham police spokesman said afterward that McDowell had come out of the house while holding a rifle and was subsequently shot in the chest.
But the family has disputed that account, according to the Oregonian. They say McDowell, a 50-year-old veteran beloved in his community, didn't realize two cops were outside his home when he stepped out, and that he was holding the rifle above his head, not threatening anyone with it.
The two officers have been identified as Jason Justus and Matthew Galbreath. Longtime readers of the Mercury may remember Justus. When Gresham's only black police officer, Sonata Kerbs, filed a discrimination complaint back in 2009, Justus was among the cops accused of using such virulent racial language that Kerbs said it "threatens to make my job a hostile work environment."