OLATHE, Kan. — The Johnson County district attorney will not press charges in a deadly Olathe police shooting that happened earlier this summer.
Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe said the two officers involved were justified in their actions when they shot and killed 58-year-old David Russell Sweet.
The district attorney released body camera and dash camera footage of the shooting scene to reporters on Tuesday. Howe also released an image of the lock-blade knife Sweet had.
According to officials, an Olathe officer conducted a traffic stop near East Santa Fe and North Water street on June 3 when Sweet pulled up as well. Howe said Sweet then drove away but returned a few minutes later.
The officer approached Sweet’s vehicle to see if he needed assistance, Howe said, and Sweet pulled out a knife. Video shows the officer backed up from Sweet and called for backup.
Sweet eventually got out of his vehicle, still holding the knife, video shows. Officers told him multiple times to stay in his car and drop the weapon, Howe said. When Sweet didn’t comply and approached officers, two officers fired their guns.
Emergency crews responded to the downtown Olathe area and tried to treat Sweet, but he died from his injuries.
Howe said he had a meeting with Sweet’s family before he announced he wouldn’t be filing charges Tuesday.
The main unanswered question is what caused Sweet’s behavior on that day.
“I can’t read minds, so I don’t know what was going through his mind,” Howe said.
Howe said, according to the family, Sweet was likely having some sort of mental health emergency.
“I just know that with these set of facts, these officers did not know Mr. Sweet. They did not know that he had potential mental health issues,” he said.
“They just knew that there was a strange individual who was inserting himself in a traffic stop who displayed a deadly weapon and then confronted them.”
The Johnson County Officer Involved Critical Incident Investigation Team handled the investigation of the police shooting. The Johnson County district attorney reviewed the case.
This is a developing story. FOX4 will have more updates on FOX4 News at 4, 5 and 6 p.m.