Solicitor: Officers justified in Brown St. fatal shooting - FOX Carolina 21

Solicitor: Officers justified in Brown St. fatal shooting

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Solicitor Walt Wilkins talks about the Brown Street shooting case. (July 2, 2013/FOX Carolina) Solicitor Walt Wilkins talks about the Brown Street shooting case. (July 2, 2013/FOX Carolina)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

The Thirteenth Circuit Solicitor announced Tuesday that two Greenville police officers were justified in their use of force in the fatal shooting of an Easley man along Brown Street in November.

Solicitor Walt Wilkins said after interviewing numerous witnesses, going through state agents' investigation and the available video, he has determined that two Greenville police officers did not engage in criminal behavior and were justified in their use of force, which killed 19-year-old Senovio Maldonado on Nov. 18, 2012.

Wilkins said all of the witness statements seemed to be consistent with what happened, though a few witnesses who were further away from the shooting said the incidents unfolded somewhat differently.

Police and Wilkins said when Maldonado was leaving Brown Street in his car, he brushed two people, one of whom made a gesture at him. Wilkins said Maldonado got out of his car with a bat then hit one of the people in the head.

Officers handling a traffic stop down Brown Street ran towards Maldonado, yelled at him to stop and put down the bat, Wilkins said. He said Maldonado then turned towards the two officers and was within six feet of them. One fired two shots, striking and killing him.

After reviewing video footage and the "totality of the circumstances," Wilkins said his office determined they cannot pursue criminal charges against the officers because the were justified in their use of force.

Wilkins said the case is closed from "this office's perspective" and the officer certainly felt threatened that his life was in danger.

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