The investigation into officers involved in a DWI checkpoint shooting in Leland earlier this summer reveals their actions were justified, according to District Attorney Jon David.
Antoine Levar Graham (Source: Brunswick County Sheriff's Office)
Jerry Melvin in court.
BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WECT) – The investigation into officers involved in a DWI checkpoint shooting in Leland earlier this summer reveals their actions were justified, according to District Attorney Jon David.
David said Friday, "the use of deadly force was a measured and justified reaction to the violent and criminal behavior" of the suspects involved in the incident.
According to authorities, Antoine Graham and Jerry Melvin were in a vehicle driving toward the checkpoint but did not stop. Deputies opened fire on the car, but it made it through without stopping.
Brunswick Sheriff John Ingram said one of the suspects got out of the car and tried to run but was caught.
The other suspect continued driving. The sheriff said deputies used a pit maneuver in an attempt to stop the car. After the spinout, the car kept going so offers opened fire on the vehicle again, because they believed there was still a threat to their safety.
Both Graham and Melvin were shot during the incident, but did not receive life-threatening injuries.
David said in a press release Friday, "law enforcement officers are required to insert themselves into volatile situations where that use of force is necessary."
The district attorney went on to say the use of deadly force in this instance was justified in reaction to Graham's actions during the checkpoint.
"In this case, the evidence clearly demonstrates that each of the officers who discharged their weapons perceived that their actions were necessary for the protection of lives," said David. "At the time of the shooting, the vehicle was being used by Mr. Graham as a deadly weapon against officers and civilians at the checkpoint."
Melvin was charged in connection to assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill and assault with a deadly weapon on a government official.
Graham was charged in connection to several felony assault with a deadly weapon on a government official and multiple counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill.
Monday, June 24 2013 4:16 PM EDT2013-06-24 20:16:42 GMT
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