This Week in the Mercury


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Grand Jury Clears Cops in Shooting of Bradley Morgan

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Wed, Feb 15, 2012 at 1:14 PM

A Multnomah County grand jury has found no criminal wrongdoing in the January 25 fatal police shooting of Bradley Lee Morgan, a suicidal man who called 911 from the roof of a downtown SmartPark garage and reportedly pointed a replica handgun at two of the officers who'd been talking with him.

From the DA's office a few minutes ago:

Today the Multnomah County grand jury returned a not true bill in the death of Brad L. Morgan on January 25th, 2012. Mr. Morgan was fatally shot by the police at a parking structure at 318 SW Morrison Street, Portland. The grand jury determined that the shooting was justified under the criminal law.

A motion to publicly disclose the transcripts of the grand jury testimony will be presented by the Multnomah County District Attorney to the Presiding Court. If the motion is granted, the transcripts should be available on February 29th, 2012 and will be posted on the public District Attorney’s website.

Morgan, 21, was killed by a single bullet after two cops, Sergeant John Holbrook and Officer David Scott, saw him point what turned out to be a painted BB gun and fired at him. Morgan's family has said he'd been despondent and dealing with suicidal thoughts for months.

When he called 911, at 3:17 the morning he died, he said he had a knife and had just robbed someone, and threatened to jump from a parking garage downtown. He also suggested, police say, that he wanted a cop to maybe shoot him instead. He was killed at 4:01 am, with mental health workers and the bureau's specially trained crisis negotiators still on the way.

Morgan's death marked the first fatal shooting involving Portland police since January 2011. It comes amid an ongoing federal investigation into whether Portland cops have a pattern of inappropriately using force against the mentally ill.

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