FIRST ON WITN: Deadly Police Shooting Justified

The district says a Jacksonville police officer acted properly when they shot and killed an armed man last week.

District Attorney Dewey Hudson says while the shooting was tragic it was justified. Samuel Jarolim was shot outside of the Azalea Gardens Apartments Friday morning. He made that determination after receiving a preliminary SBI report on the shooting.

Assistant District Attorney Ernie Lee says Jarolim went to Wal-Mart earlier in the morning where he purchased shotgun shells. He said shortly before 8:00 a.m. the 911 center received a call from Jarollim, where he made references to killing cops and shooting around the neighborhood.

Jacksonville Police Chief Mike Yaniero said his department has classified the shooting a police-assisted suicide.

"The evidence indicates that Mr. Jarolim engaged in a conscious life-threatening behavior to the degree that it compelled the police officers to respond with deadly force. It's unfortunate whenever our officers are put in a situation in which they have to make the difficult decision of whether or not to use deadly force." said the chief.

Authorities also played a video tape at a news conference Thursday morning of events that led up to the shooting as captured by a dash-mounted camera in a patrol car.

Jarolim had several guns, one of them was loaded. Police say several times they ordered the 30-year-old man to drop the guns, but he continued toward them.

The man was shot once by a police-issued shotgun.

Jarolim's family told WITN that he was bipolar, on medication for the condition and they don't believe he meant to harm anyone.

Chief Yaniero says the officer, who was placed on administrative duty after the shooting, has returned to regular duty.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Anonymous Location: NC on Aug 23, 2009 at 03:25 PM
    As for the shoulder shot comment, you will find that the targets used for state qualification are of a "center mass" silhouette ...no arms and legs. There's a reason for that. Officers are NOT trained to MAIM!
  • by C on Aug 21, 2009 at 03:47 PM
    One last thing,Jeremy: Best of luck with your career choice! Regards,C
  • by C on Aug 21, 2009 at 03:46 PM
    Jeremy: First off,a sincere "thank you" for serving our country. Your intended career choice is also noble and honorable.You will find in Basic Law Enforcement Training that what I've already said is true:Officers meet force with equal force,and only movie/TV cops go for "shoulder shots".As for the officer using a shotgun in this situation,most departments issue them to officers.It comes back to meeting force with equal force.Tasers are used on unarmed offenders.Firearms are used when the offender has one [or any other deadly weapon] too.The suspect here had a rifle,which is superior to any handgun in terms of range,accuracy,and power.This officer wisely chose to overcome this disparity with his shotgun.Once you get past BLET and work the field for a while,I suspect you may understand all of this a bit better.As for how many times they asked him to drop it:Sometimes,one warning is all they have time for,or maybe not even that many.The suspect's actions dictate the officer's response.
  • by jeremy on Aug 21, 2009 at 10:15 AM
    this is a continuation of last. then the police officer should take action. I would have used my pistol for a shoulder shot to take him down. If the man still tried after being shot still pursued to try and harm law enforcement then yes deadly force is authorized. the only other thing I could think of is why was the officer using a shotgun as oppposed to using his sidearm. If you ask me what I would have done I would have gone threw every possible less than lethal tactic before executing deadly force. If deadly force was the only option then yes i would have shoot to kill. If not i would have used my escalation of force.
  • by jeremy on Aug 21, 2009 at 10:03 AM
    Well I have to say that I have read everyone's comments on the situation and I have to say that yes some of what "C" has to say is true, But as we do live in America everyone has a title to their own opinion. This is my take on the situation that has transpired. I believe that there could have been a more less than lethal tatic. I have served my country honorably and i am pursuing a job in law enforcement. So when i say that when i was trained, we were told to exercise our use of force with deadly force being the last measure possible. There could have been another way to bring the man down the story does not say wether or not the weapon was aimed in on the police or was it down while he proceeded towards the police. The other thing is how many times or how long did the police ask the man to lay down his weapon. Do i think the police should hesitate when deciding when to authorize deadly force it really depends on the situation. If the man raises his weapon with the intent to shoot....
  • by matt on Aug 21, 2009 at 09:59 AM
    I think "C" speaks well enough for all of us. May God protect all law enforcement officers
  • by C on Aug 21, 2009 at 09:19 AM
    Kimberly: Officers do not "shoot to maim". They shoot to STOP. They are trained to aim for the body's center of mass,the spot that,when hit by a bullet,is most likely to stop a person's illegal homicidal assault.If the armed aggressor dies later as a result,that is an unfortunate consequence brought about by THEIR OWN actions.Some people who want to end their own lives but don't wish to do it themselves will goad police into doing it for them. They do it by assaulting them with deadly force.The officers then have no choice but to use their weapons to defend themselves from what reasonably appears to be an attempt on their lives. That is called "suicide by cop."
  • by C on Aug 21, 2009 at 08:44 AM
    To Someone like me: You just made my day. Thank you! Take Care, C
  • by Kimberly Location: New York on Aug 21, 2009 at 08:40 AM
    Whatever happened to "shoot to maim"? Yes if a man is approaching law enforcement with a weapon loaded or not, it is seen as a threat but to what degree do they get to decide if its ok to kill the man? I can understand a shot to simply take him down but not to execute. In what world can "a police-assisted suicide" be justified?
  • by Someone like "me" Location: USA on Aug 21, 2009 at 06:35 AM
    Comment to C: I want to wave my hand high in the air for you. I'm with you on EVERYTHING you stated! Excellent comment(s). Again, BIG "DITTO" !!!!
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