No charges for officers who shot, killed man in Dearborn Co.

No charges for officers who shot, killed man in Dearborn Co.
Christopher A. Schmitt, 58, was killed in the shooting that happened Jan. 12 around 11 a.m. in the 12000 block of Five Point Road. (Source: Indiana State Police)

SUNMAN, IN (FOX19) - Officials say no criminal charges will be filed against the two officers who shot and killed a man in Sunman, Indiana in January.

Special Prosecuting Attorney and Ripley County Prosecutor Ric Hertel made the announcement when he presented his findings during a press conference Wednesday morning.

Christopher A. Schmitt, 58, was killed in the shooting that happened Jan. 12 around 11 a.m. in the 12000 block of Five Point Road.

Indiana State Police detectives investigated the shooting and the Hamilton County Coroner’s office conducted the autopsy.

Hertel says the autopsy report was completed in April.

Dearborn County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Weigel and Indiana State trooper Jordan Craig responded to the home after getting report of a man with a firearm, according to state police.

Craig is a three year veteran of the Indiana State Police and Weigel has been with the Dearborn County Sheriff’s Department for over a year.

Officials said that within minutes of arriving, Schmitt pointed a gun at the officers, and both Weigel and Craig fired shots.

The report says Schmitt’s wife told police her husband said he was ‘going to die’ the day of the shooting.

Trooper Craig said he saw a struggle between Schmitt and his wife when he arrived at the home. Schmitt then came out of the house and lowered a weapon at the officer, the report says, and Craig fired two shots at him.

Deputy Weigel also said he heard screaming from inside the home. He said he saw Schmitt point a weapon at Craig and fired at least 10 shots at Schmitt.

Hertel said he found no wrongdoing in the case and said no criminal charges will be filed against either officer.

The autopsy report showed that Schmitt died from four gunshot wounds and investigators say he had ‘toxic’ levels of drugs in his system.

At the time of the shooting, Sgt. Stephen Wheeles with the Indiana State Police said that it was too early to say who struck Schmitt.

Both officers involved were placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation. Officials said this is standard procedure.

Dearborn-Ohio County Prosecuting Attorney Lynn Deddens asked for Hertel’s appointment because of the local law enforcement officers involved in the case.

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