Oxford police: Shooting of robbery suspect justified
Posted March 9, 2011
Oxford, N.C. — Oxford police said Wednesday that a robbery suspect scuffled with an officer and pointed a gun at the officer at close range before being shot and killed.
Police Chief John M. Woolard said the initial investigation shows that Sgt. Roger Fuller was justified in using deadly force in his encounter with Ike Hutcherson, 40, last Friday.
"Fuller was involved in a worst-case scenario for any officer, and it is apparent his actions were in keeping with his training and within departmental guidelines," Woolard said in a statement.
Police said that Hutcherson used a pellet gun to rob a worker at the Nationwide Insurance office on Gilliam Street last Friday morning.
A short while later, police said, Fuller spotted Hutcherson, who matched the description of the robber, on Railroad Avenue and tried to arrest him. Hutcherson fought with Fuller and "pointed the weapon inches from the officer's body," Woolard said.
Fuller fired one shot, which killed Hutcherson, police said.
Fuller, a 24-year veteran of the Oxford Police Department, has been placed on paid administrative leave while Oxford police and the State Bureau of Investigation finish their reviews of the incident. Those follow standard procedure for all incidents in which an officer discharges a firearm.