Two cops ‘voluntarily’ resigned for failing to use a lethal weapon on a suspect

According to the authorities, two Fairfield, Ohio police officers “voluntarily” resigned because they chose to use a Taser instead of a lethal weapon against an armed suspect.

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Austin Reed and Mark Bartlett, the two officers who were hired in February 2022, recently resigned after being reprimanded for not shooting an armed suspect during a police chase.

How it happened

According to investigators, officers Reed and Bartlett were on the hunt for 25-year-old Stephaun Jones on the evening of October 8 after he fatally shot 25-year-old Sidney Printup.

The shooting occurred after Jones and Printup were involved in a car accident in the 1900 block of Fairgrove Avenue in Hamilton. According to witnesses, Jones also fired his gun into cars nearby while fleeing the scene.

Reed and Bartlett were the first responding officers to arrive at the scene, and they caught up with Jones in a yard off of Morris Road, according to police reports. Jones brandished a gun at the officers and disobeyed their commands as soon as Bartlett and Reed got out of their cars.

In the police report, officer Bartlett said he could not use deadly force because it wasn’t a clear shot. “I was unable to take a shot at the suspect due to a citizen mowing his lawn behind the male suspect,” Bartlett said.

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According to the police report, Jones ran out of the yard, and while he was evading the officers, Officer Reed used his Taser, but Jones was not hit.

After losing sight of Jones, officers Reed and Bartlett called for backup and, in the 6400 block of Tara Brook Court, Jones was confronted by two Hamilton police officers. The Hamilton police officers fatally shot Jones after he allegedly pulled a gun on them.

There is an active and ongoing investigation, according to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation. Per departmental policy, the two Hamilton officers are on administrative leave. The names of the officers have not yet been released, according to the police.

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The Reprehension faced by Reed and Bartlett, the two Fairfield, Ohio police officers that “voluntarily” resigned

Chief Robert Chabeli criticized officers Reed and Bartlett on Wednesday for not using lethal force against Jones and added that both the officers had “voluntarily” resigned last week.

“It’s been determined that our two officers did not really do what they were meant to do, and that is to use lethal force to stop the gentleman’s threat,” Chabeli said. “The gentleman was known to have a gun and that gun was observed and he leveled off at the officers with that pistol.”

Chabeli went on to say that the decision to use a Teaser instead of a lethal weapon was inappropriate and that it was best that the officers chose to resign.

“One of the officers inappropriately fired a Taser at him and that Taser was not the proper tool to use. You don’t use less lethal when you have someone armed with a lethal weapon,” Chabeli said. “Ultimately, it was best for them to resign,” Chabeli added.

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