UPDATE: Salt Lake County DA clears officers in February fatal shooting

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UPDATE: 9/18/2020) – The Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill has cleared two officers involved in a fatal shooting of a violent parole fugutive in February.

In a statement released by Sim Gill, their office, along with participating law enforcement agencies conduct independent reviews of officer-involved critical incidents, including police officers’ use of deadly force used in the scope of police officers’ official duties. 

After conducting an Officer Involved Critical Incident (OICI) review, the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office has determined that the Feb. 13, 2020 use of deadly force by a Herriman City Police Department Officer and Department of Homeland Security Officer does not warrant criminal charges. 

Due to the fact there was not any body worn camera footage to review, we are releasing our decision in the attached letter and not holding a press conference.

41-year-old Brian Francis Filion was shot and killed near 500 East and 300 South just before midnight on Febraury 13.

Herriman Police Department K9 Hondo, was also while assisting the U.S. Marshal’s Office in apprehending Filion.

ORIGINAL STORY:

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – A K9 died and a suspect shot and killed during a shooting with police Thursday night in Salt Lake City.

The incident happened near 500 East and 300 South just before midnight.

Police say a U.S. Marshall led Fugitive Task Force Violence Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team was tracking down a local parole fugitive, later identified as Brian Francis Filion, 41, and found him coming out of an apartment and tried to arrest him when he took off, officials say.

Officers say he pulled out a weapon and before he used it, task force officers shot and killed him.

Resident who live in the complex report hearing two gunshots. 

“All I heard were gun shots, Jessica Stetson said. “A little scared and a little safe at the same time”. 

During the shooting a Herriman City Police K9 was also shot and killed but the details of how he was shot have not been released.

Herriman City Police Lt. Cody Stromberg said that while their department does have body armor for both of our K9 officers, the operation Thursday night quickly evolved from surveillance into apprehension and there was not time for his handler to apply PSD Hondo’s body armor prior to deploying him. 

“On a pre-planned non-dynamic operation such as a SWAT entry, the handler would outfit the K9 with their body armor prior to the service of the warrant,” said Stromberg.

Lt. Cody Stromberg, with Herriman City Police issued the following statement Friday morning:

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Herriman Police Department K9 Hondo, who was killed in the line of duty last night while assisting the U.S. Marshal’s Office in apprehending a dangerous fugitive.

A Facebook post by the Unified Police Department Taylorsville Precinct reads:

“Our hearts are broken this morning after learning of the death of Herriman City Police K9 Hondo, who was shot and killed late last night (Thursday) while apprehending a violent parole fugitive. Our thoughts are with Herriman PD and particularly with the K9 handler and his family, who lost their beloved partner and friend. Thank you for your sacrifice, service and dedication. All give some, some give all….”

Unified Police Department Taylorsville Precinct

Outside of the apartments where Hondo was shot and killed is a growing memorial. We spoke to the woman who decided to remember the fallen K-9.

“That dog was a special dog, it was specially trained to protect us,” the woman said. 

We expect the U.S Marshall’s Office to release more information later Friday afternoon. 

A press conference is scheduled at Herriman City Police Department Friday at 3 p.m.

*In law enforcement, K9s are also called officers. We have since changed the wording to help clarify any confusion in regards to a K9 “officer” being killed did not mean the animals handler, but the actual K9.*

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