Chief St. John Gives Update on Officer Involved Shooting on Billings West End
At a press conference today (10/13), Billings Police Department Chief Rich St. John released more details regarding an Officer Involved Shooting that occurred at approximately 10:20 p.m. Monday night on the 2200 block of Ave C. BPD shared news of the altercation in a Tweet.
Chief St. John said all individuals involved in the incident are well known by local and state law enforcement for previous participation in drug activity and other offenses. When officers arrived on the scene Monday evening at a covered parking area near the apartment complex on Ave C, one of the suspects refused to comply with orders. The suspect was tased and a struggle ensued. During the struggle, the man drew a semi-automatic handgun from his waistband. BDP Officers Justin Bickman and Wieland Nelson then both fired multiple shots at the suspect.
The 29-year-old suspect was treated at the scene and was later pronounced dead at a local hospital. The officers who fired their weapons in the altercation are both 3-year veterans of the Billings Police Department and both are on administrative leave, pending the department's Use of Force Review and investigation. Neither officers were wearing body cams, but St. John said audio and video from the scene was captured by squad car cameras. The two other individuals at the scene were questioned and released.
The deceased man's name has not been released, pending family notification and no further information was available at this time. St. John noted that "suspicious activity" is their number one call and commended Billings residents for reporting situations that appear suspicious.