FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) No charges will be filed in the May 2012 shooting in which a trooper shot and killed a man after trying to break up a fight near a bar at Main and Cherry Streets, the Allen County Prosecutor's Office announced on Friday.
The Prosecutor's Office sent the following statement:
The Office of the Allen County Prosecuting Attorney has completed its review of the investigation surrounding the police action shooting that occurred in May 18, 2012, at 1159 West Main Street, in Fort Wayne, Indiana, which resulted in the death of Lucius Washington. The investigation was completed by the Indiana State Police. The Prosecuting Attorney's Office has determined that no criminal charges will be filed as a result of this incident, as there is insufficient evidence of criminal liability to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Prosecutor Karen Richards further explained why no charges will be filed.
"You would have to have sufficient information to prove that there had been a murder...that there was an intentional killing with absolutely no possibility of self defense," Richards said. "In this particular case, there was not sufficient evidence to prove all of those elements."
Indiana State Police said the shooting happened around 3:00 a.m. on May 18, 2012 near a bar called "The Berlin." Fort Wayne police said the name of the establishment has changed several times through the years. It was previously called "The River."
Trooper Seth Mann, who has been with the ISP since 2007, was on duty and in a fully-marked squad car traveling from the Allen County Jail when he noticed an altercation outside the bar near the intersection of Main and Cherry Streets.
"One person was on the ground being beaten down by more than one person," Sgt. Ron Galaviz with the Indiana State Police said.
Officials said Mann turned around and tried to intervene.
"The crowd dispersed and he ordered everybody to stop, which they did, save one person," Galaviz said.
That man, Lucius Washington, took off at a fast walk. Mann went after him an attempt to figure out what was going on. Galaviz said Mann ordered Washington to stop and to identify himself, but that he didn't comply.
Authorities said that's when another altercation of some sort happened between Washington and Mann. Mann then fired his weapon, killing Washington.
Washington was shot in a yard across the street, an estimated 50 feet, from where the fight was broken up.
Washington's mother Brenda lives in Mississippi and spoke with NewsChannel 15 over the phone Friday. She calls the decision not to file charges unacceptable.
"Let me clarify, Lucius was not perfect. Lucius did things. He had a domestic charge. He had a drug charge. But that still doesn't justify anybody killing anybody that's unarmed," Brenda Washington said. "That has nothing to do with the altercation."
The mother said whether her son was in the right or wrong, she can't sleep until the shooting is investigated further.
"I don't want this case closed," she said. "I want this to be open to the eyes of the public because I just can't see this. I can't see you shooting somebody more than one time...and you find that justifiable? And he's unarmed? No."
Brenda Washington said she has a lawyer and is trying to decide what to do next.
Indiana State Police did the investigation involving their own trooper. When asked what she thought about that protocol, Richards had no comment.
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