Prosecutors said they will not file criminal charges against two law enforcement officers who shot and killed a Mauldin man in the parking lot of the Greenville County Law Enforcement Center.
Thirteenth Circuit Solicitor Walt Wilkins said charges will not be filed against the Greenville police officer or the Greenville County deputy in the fatal shooting of Wesley Kyle Swilling, 31, on Jan. 14.
Friday, officials released video surveillance footage of the incident from cameras outside the LEC. The cameras that captured the fatal confrontation automatically move, so they only give a few glimpses of what happened before panning away. For a few minutes, parts of a confrontation between a man and two law enforcement officers can be seen on the video.
"As they were shooting, he was ducking behind cars, ducking behind trees, engaging them around the patrol car, moving away from him in a defensive manner," said Wilkins during a press conference Wednesday.
Wilkins said he has reviewed the State Law Enforcement Division's investigation and local law enforcement's reports.
"I believe the evidence supports the facts that the officers acted properly and appropriately under the circumstance," Wilkins said on Wednesday in a press release sent to FOX Carolina.
In February, spokespersons for both the Greenville Police Department and Greenville County Sheriff's Office said Swilling came to the parking lot and threw a baseball at the officer then yelled, threatening to kill him and pulled what looked like a handgun out and pointed it at the officer and deputy.
During the encounter, authorities said both the officer and deputy repeatedly ordered Swilling to stop and drop what they thought was a weapon, but he refused, and they returned with gunfire.
Police and deputies later revealed that Swilling was actually armed with a hot glue gun.
In all, the deputy fired 22 rounds and the officer fired two rounds, according to Greenville Police Chief Terry Wilfong and Greenville County Maj. Shea Smith. Seven vehicles parked in the lot were struck.
Greenville County Deputy Coroner Jeff Fowler said Swilling was shot seven times, including taking a bullet to the chest. The deputy and officer involved were not injured.
Smith said the deputy believed they were in imminent danger, was justified in using deadly force and has since returned to work. At the February press conference, Wilfong said her officer remained on administrative duty.
Swilling's family has said they don't understand what happened, why their son was there that morning and why officers could not have stopped him in another way.
SLED has yet to finish or release details of their investigation, which is standard protocol in any officer-involved shooting in South Carolina.
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Tuesday, May 21 2013 2:01 AM EDT2013-05-21 06:01:07 GMT
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