Man killed by police had history of drugs, mental illness and prison


SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Utah) –  Lonnie Bowen battled demons nearly all his life.

In January, he was released from prison after telling the Board of Pardons he was a changed man and was “a born again Christain.”

Tuesday he was killed by police after a chase that ended in Magna.

“I believe Lonnie was on drugs,” said his former wife Casey Padilla.

Authorties said they were alerted early Tuesday morning after Bowen made a
911 call in which he was going to kill the woman he was with, if police didn’t back off.

“I believe he was seeing things that weren’t there,” said Padilla.

Police said there was a woman with Bowen when he was shot.

On Facebook N.B. posted the following two messages: “the police shot him with me in his lap”
N.B:  “I am not sure what to say.  my mind is a mess right now.  i don’t know how to process this.  i am still in shock and emotional.”

Authorities won’t say why Bowen was shot.  The case is still under investigation to determine if those involved were justified in shooting him.

The couple have a son together.

“I was pretty sad (to hear he was killed),” said Padilla. “I was sad for my son most of all.”

Two days before his death, Bowen posted a Facetime video: “The Salt Lake PD are killers and they are responsible for anything that happens to me, death wise.  They want to kill me.”   

But his former wife said Bowen suffers from a mental illness and when he’s on drugs, she said he hallucinates.

“He thought the cops were after him and the cops were trying to do bad for him,” she said.  “But I don’t believe that anybody was after him.”
Last week Salt Lake police investigated Bowen where a woman claimed she was forced to drive him around and would put a screwdriver to her neck.

Police didn’t arrest him because a spokesman for the police department said the alleged victim’s story didn’t pan out.
But Bowen told police that his use of meth caused paranoia into believing the woman wanted police to kill him.

Bowen was in and out of prison for the past twenty years.
The Board of Pardons was well aware of his past in which drugs along with his mental illness made him violent.
During a 2011 the hearing officer conducting his parole hearing told him “
The concerns that were identified, the drug use, what the drug use does as far as it perpetuates your actions, particularly for assaulted behavior.”  
They talked about his crime one of those episodes of paranoia.  
“You thought people were trying to kill you and that’s why you broke into the home, is that correct?” the hearing officer asked him.  “Yes ‘mam,” he answered. “I am ashamed of myself.”
According to prison records Bowen was released from prison but returned when he was caught using drugs.

At a 2012 parole hearing Bowen told the hearing officer “I have a mental disability of paranoid schezophrenic in my file.”
But after three previous releases, the Board of Pardons kept him in prison until January 2017.
Prior to his release Bowen told the hearing officer that using drugs affected his mental illness.
The following are excerpts from that 2017 hearing:
Bowen: “I think that (drugs) was a good part of it,”
Hearing Officer:  “You’ve been clean for a long time now.  How does your head feel?”
Bowen:  “Good.”
Hearing Officer: “I mean do you struggle with hearing things that aren’t there still?”
Bowen:  “No.”
Hearing Officer: “Do you see things that aren’t there?”
Bowen:  “No.”

Before the 2017 concluded Bowen promised that his life had changed during the past five years.  

“(I) am a born again Christain,” he told the hearing officer. “I wasted too many years over nonesense andlook back and I am ashamed of the person I used to be and I’ll never be that again.”

But that pledge didn’t last long according to his former wife.

“He went back to his old ways,” said Padilla.

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