A state investigation says a Mount Pleasant police officer was justified in the fatal shooting of a man at the local hospital. The investigation by Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and the Henry County Attorney’s office determined that the actions of officer Rich Martin were justified and performed within the scope of his employment as a police officer and were intended as defensive tactic to protect himself and others from the actions of Michael Harris.
The statements from witnesses confirm that Harris was exhibiting irrational, threatening and violent behaviors and that Harris was the aggressor in his confrontation with officer Martin. Officer Martin attempted to use verbal directives to control Harris. Harris ignored the officer’s verbal directives and charged at the officer. Officer Martin then attempted to use a taser to control Harris, but the taser had no effect.
Officer Martin broke free and backed away from Harris, drew his weapon and again gave a verbal directive for Harris to stop. Harris again charged officer Martin and started to choke the officer. Martin shot Harris once through the chest. Harris then went to an examination table where emergency procedures were performed on him, but he died a short time later. No criminal charges will be filed.