The Washington County Attorney’s Office will not charge two Forest Lake officers and a Washington County deputy who were involved in a fatal officer-involved shooting last fall. On Nov. 28, 47-year-old Bradley Erickson was shot after a standoff and brief chase; he later died of his injuries. The incident was investigated by the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. Portions of the incident were captured on police cameras, but have not been released to the public.

At 1:33 p.m. on Nov. 28, the Forest Lake Police Department and Washington County Sheriff’s office responded to a 911 call on the 8300 block of 224th Street North in Forest Lake. According to the attorney’s office press release, the caller, who had a protective order against Erickson, said he was at her home threatening to shoot her and any responding law enforcement. When officer’s arrived, they saw Erickson walking with a rifle near the residence. Officers attempted negotiations with Erickson, and used the squad car public address system to offer help and resources, while also telling him to surrender his weapon. Erickson shouted at officers and went to his vehicle with his rifle, then fled the residence. Officers pursued, and used a PIT maneuver to disable the vehicle around the 7000 block of North Shore Trail. 

According to the release, Erickson pointed his rifle directly toward the deputy. At that time, Forest Lake police officers Jonathan Glader and Matthew Smith, along with Washington County Sheriff’s deputy Greg Reiter, fired their weapons. Medical aid was given and Erickson was transported to the hospital where he later died. The officers and deputy who fired their weapons were all placed on standard administrative leave. Glader and Smith returned to the police department after two weeks, which is standard protocol, according to Forest Lake police Capt. Greg Weiss.

BCA Criminal Division Head Nick Hydukovich and Washington County Assistant Attorney Tom Frenette determined that the use of deadly force was justified as the officers and deputy were left with no other means of deescalation, and reasonably feared great bodily harm or death,.

“While the death of an individual by deadly force is never to be taken lightly, there is no question that the actions of the officers in this matter were wholly justified,” Hydukovich in a press release. “The need to take a human life deeply affects all of those involved, and these officers made every effort to avoid having to take that action.”

Hannah Davis is the Area Editor at the Forest Lake Times. You can contact her at hannah.davis@ecm-inc.com or (763)233-0709

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