Lynchburg Police Officer Who Shot Another Officer Will Not Face Criminal Charges
Lynchburg, VA - The Lynchburg police officer who injured another officer two months ago will not face criminal charges. The Commonwealth's attorney announced his decision in a news conference Wednesday morning.
Mike Doucette explains his decision not to press criminal charges in a 12-page report. However, it does not address whether the officer should face any civil penalties or punishment within the department
The report identifies the officer who shot Gary Hilber as Taylor Clark.
It says on April 10, officers with the Vice and Narcotics Unit were looking for a large amount of marijuana at the McCausland Ridge Apartments.
When officers entered one of the apartments, they saw two men sitting on the couch and another man, identified as David Gaines, running out the open back door.
Officer Hilber jumped over the railing, unholstered his service handgun, and began chasing the suspect.
Taylor Clark, thinking Hilber was the suspect, yelled "Drop the gun, drop the gun, drop the gun."
The report says Hilber was still holding his service weapon when he turned towards the voice and said, "Hey, it's me."
Clark then fired once, shooting Hilber in the right upper chest.
"In the dark and confusion of that night, officer Clark reasonably perceived an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury and responded in a manner proportionate to that threat," said Doucette.
The police chief also attended Wednesday's news conference.
He said Hilber has taken a job with the Chesapeake Police Department and Clark remains on administrative duties.
The police department has completed its own internal investigation. The chief says once he finishes reviewing it, he'll hand it over to the city manager.
The city manager says he will release that report to the public.