RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. (KTHV) - An officer involved in a deadly shooting earlier this month has been cleared of any wrongdoing.
In a letter written to the Russellville Police Dept., Prosecutor David Gibbons said the force that Officer Aaron Taylor used was justified.
On October 5, officers with the RPD responded to a suicidal subject on West I Street. When they arrived, police say the suspect, Walter Hirsh, came out of his house with a firearm in his hand. When Hirsh, 54, reportedly aimed the gun at the officers, Taylor responded by shooting Hirsh.
After investigation, Gibbons concluded that Taylor's action was appropriate due to the deadly threat made toward officers and bystanders nearby. Gibbons said this was a situation initiated by the suspect, not the officer.
"We regret the loss of life in this situation," Gibbons said in his letter. "But due to the circumstances, it was a necessary action for the Officer to protect himself and others in the immediate area."
Gibbons concluded the letter by saying he found the response to be lawful.