Jan. 12—A Butler County grand jury declined to indict either Fairfield Twp. officer involved in the shooting of a 29-year-man “in emotional distress” back in November.
On Nov. 2, police were called to the Carmago Trailer Park in the 5500 block of Liberty-Fairfield Road after reports that Brian Hubbard was seen wielding a 6-to-8-inch-long butcher’s knife and a hammer and threatened to harm any officer that showed up if the authorities were called.
As township police officers Adam Green and Richard Coy spoke with the suspect’s mother ― they could see Hubbard pacing inside his parents’ trailer ― and tried to control a growing crowd of neighbors, Hubbard came out with the two weapons. The officers could be heard yelling orders on police dashboard and body-worn cameras, “put the weapon down now,” “put it down, put it down now,” and “back up” several times.
Then multiple shots were fired.
Based on the video shown by the Fairfield Twp. Police Department, officers fired five shots ― a burst of three and then a burst of two. The police report indicated five shell casings were recovered.
Fairfield Twp. Police Chief Robert Chabali said Green was the only officer to fire at Hubbard.
The incident, like all officer-involved shootings, was considered by a Butler County grand jury. Butler County Prosecutor Mike Gmoser said “the grand jury determined that no indictment was appropriate against any officer responding to this critical incident. The shooting was justified as a matter of evidence and law.”
Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation Special Agent Richard Ward and his team conducted an independent investigation of the incident, Gmoser said.
Chabali said the officers’ service weapons were drawn instead of Tasers because of the police department’s use of force policy, which states that deadly force is justified “to protect him/herself or others from what he/she reasonably believes would be an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury.”
With the known threats against police, Chabali said the knife and a hammer were, at that point, considered lethal weapons. The chief said Hubbard was “closing the distance to (Green), so I believe an officer does not have to get injured to use that type of response.”
Additionally, the chief said that “most vests don’t protect against a knife like that.”
After Hubbard was struck, the weapons were placed on the ground and he fled into the trailer. Green, followed by Coy, entered the trailer chasing Hubbard. Green tackled him, who was handcuffed behind his back immediately. Once secured, the officers began first aid on Hubbard until the requested medical units arrived.
This was the first-ever officer-involved shooting in Fairfield Twp. to Chabali’s knowledge, who’s been the department’s chief since 2017.
Hubbard is under the medical care of Butler County Crisis Care. A member of the crisis care team called 911 after speaking with Hubbard’s parents. She told dispatchers that the 29-year-old is “delusional, significantly agitated; threatening to hurt the police if they come, but no one else has been threatened.”
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