HAMILTON – State investigators have been called in to review evidence in an officer-involved shooting of a 47-year-old Hamilton man Thursday night.
The incident began with a 7:39 p.m. call to the Ravalli County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency number from a woman saying her son was having problems with his girlfriend at his residence, according to a Montana Department of Justice news release.
The 47-year-old man – whose name has yet to be released – called the same number at 8 p.m., asking that a deputy come to his residence at 808 Cuf Lane.
At 8:21 p.m., the man called 9-1-1 to continue to talk about problems he was having with his girlfriend, who was not present at his home at the time.
The deputy – a three-year veteran of the Ravalli County Sheriff’s Office – arrived at the man’s home just before 8:30 p.m.
The man allegedly became angry and agitated with the deputy after talking for several minutes, the news release said. He accused the deputy of not being a real law enforcement officer.
The man then walked toward a weapon that was visible in the room.
The deputy told him not to pick up the weapon, but the man allegedly disregarded those instructions and turned the weapon toward the law enforcement officer.
In response to the threat, the deputy fired and killed the man.
The man died on the scene.
The deputy has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation into the incident in accordance with standard procedure.
Ravalli County Sheriff Chris Hoffman requested the Montana Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation take the lead in considering the facts that will be reviewed in a coroner’s inquest to be held in Ravalli County.
Powell County Coroner John Pohle will serve as coroner in the case. Once the state’s investigation is complete, the case file will be turned over to Pohle and the Ravalli County attorney for review.
Local law enforcement agencies routinely request that state officials investigate officer-involved shootings.