Oklahoma Police Officer Charged With Manslaughter
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Oklahoma police officer who fatally shot a man wielding a baseball bat has been charged with first-degree manslaughter.
The Oklahoman reports Chance Avery, a corporal with The Village Police Department, shot Christopher Poor, 49, three times July 25, according to court records.
Avery was at the home at the request of Poor’s wife, who was picking up some personal belongings, when Poor ran from the garage into the living room clutching the bat, police said.
“While verbally engaged with Mr. Poor, Avery discharged his firearm, striking Mr. Poor three times, causing his death,” a deputy sheriff wrote in a probable cause affidavit. “This level of force utilized by Chance Avery exceeded the level of force appropriate for the victim’s actions during this encounter.”
Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater filed the charge against Avery on Friday.
Defense attorney Gary James told The Oklahoman that Avery had a right to use deadly force because Poor ignored multiple commands to drop the bat and continued to approach the officer.
The attorney said he was arranging for Avery’s surrender to authorities.
Deputy Chief Russ Landon said Avery remains on paid administrative leave.