ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) - The St. Louis Circuit Attorney says her office will not file charges against the officers involved in the shooting death of 18-year-old Mansur Ball-Bey. His family was just informed of the decision.
Ball-Bey was shot and killed on August 19, 2015, in the highly charged days following the anniversary of the fatal shooting death of Michael Brown by a Ferguson police officer. The signicant date prompted talk about race and police relations nationwide.
The family's attorney says his clients are not surprised by the decision explained in this 43 page report. But he says they are disappointed.
Ball-Bey was killed last August by a single bullet that struck him in the back. It was fired by a St. Louis police officer after Ball-Bey allegedly pointed a gun at another officer. It happened just after Ball-Bey allegedly ran out the rear of a two family flat in the 1200 block of Walton. Police were searching inside for guns and drugs.
The Circuit Attorney's report concludes there is not enough evidence to charge the officers, that the evidence they do have supports the claim of self defense.
The investigation found two versions of the story. One as told by the two officers, plus an ATF agent who were part of the operation, as well as an off duty police officer who happened to be in a nearby yard.
The other version comes from the 14 year old who was with Ball-Bey at the time of the shooting. He claims Ball-Bey did not have a gun.
The report says a palm print matching Ball-Bey's was found on the ammunition clip of the gun he allegedly pointed toward one of the officers as he ran away. It also compares pictures of the gun at the scene to pictures from Ball-Bey's phone and on social media showing him holding what appears to be the same gun.
The Circuit Attorney's report also cites numerous inconsistancies in the story told by that 14 -year old who had been with Ball-Bey at the scene, including where the two of them had been standing when the shots were fired, and even why they had been together that day.
The Circuit Attorney's Office conducted its investigation at the same time the police department's force investigative unit prepared its report which was released in April. That report also concluded charges against the officers in the case would not be warranted.
The investigation released by the Circuit Attorney's office states:
After completing his reexamination and reviewing the case materials, the Chief Medical Examiner consulted with several neuropathologists to get their opinions on whether Ball-Bey would have been able to continue running after he was shot. Based on these consultations and his review of the physical evidence, he believes Ball-Bey continued to run and that his spinal cord was not completely severed at the time he was shot. The spinal cord was severed at some point after the shooting. He explained this could have been caused by the movement of Ball-Bey running, the pressure put on him while he was being handcuffed, or the movement of the body for transport and examination after he was already dead.
In addition, the Medical Examiner has stated the damage to Ball-Bey’s spinal cord was not fatal. The spinal cord injury did not cause Ball-Bey’s death. He would have died even if the cord had not been severed. The damage done to his heart by the bullet is what ultimately caused his death.
The Community Report issued by the Circuit Attorney of St. Louis says thay a gun with a similar make and model found after the shooting was seen in a picture on Ball- Bey's cell phone and social media accounts.
This is a portion of a statement issued by St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson:
"Today, the Circuit Attorney's Office concluded its review of the officer-involved shooting of Mansur Ball-Bey. I am confident their conclusion is the result of a comprehensive review of the incident and all of the facts and evidence presented."
On August 19, 2015, Mansur Ball-Bey was shot and fatally wounded during the service of a search warrant in the 1200 block of Walton. On April 18, 2016, the Force Investigative Unit (FIU) concluded its investigation into the incident and referred its findings to the Circuit Attorney's Office. The Circuit Attorney's Office then conducted an independent investigation and has determined a criminal violation against either officer could not be proven beyond a reasonable doubt."
Read more about the shooting in the Community Report issued by the Circuit Attorney of St. Louis:
This is a developing story and will be updated