Federal civil rights expenses will not be filed towards a Kansas police officer who killed teenage driver

Federal prosecutors introduced Friday that they won’t pursue prison civil rights expenses towards a Kansas police officer who fatally shot a teen in 2018 throughout a wellness examine.

The Division of Justice’s choice comes virtually two years after an investigation was opened into the killing of John Albers, 17, whose demise within the Kansas Metropolis suburb of Overland Park reignited the nationwide outcry over police use of extreme power.

“Right now, there’s inadequate proof to determine past an affordable doubt that the officer willfully dedicated a violation of the federal prison civil rights statute,” the Division of Justice mentioned in a press release. “Particularly, the proof doesn’t clear the excessive bar that the Supreme Court docket has set for assembly this commonplace, and the division has subsequently closed its investigation into this matter.”

The Overland Park police officer, Clayton Jenison, had been on the power for about two years on the time of the capturing. He ultimately agreed to resign — with a $70,000 severance package deal — even though Johnson County District Lawyer Steve Howe had cleared him of wrongdoing.

In making the announcement that no expenses can be filed, Howe launched dashcam video and mentioned Jenison, who mentioned he feared for his life, was justified in his actions when he opened hearth 13 instances.

However Albers’ dad and mom have lengthy disputed the police division’s narrative over what occurred, blasting native prosecutors’ investigation as being biased and missing competence.

The dad and mom pushed for recordsdata within the case to be made public, which lastly occurred in April 2021, when town of Overland Park launched a redacted 500-page report together with images, movies of further dashcam footage, and an interview carried out with Jenison after the capturing. NBC affiliate KSHB in Kansas Metropolis, Missouri, had additionally sued Overland Park for the discharge of these investigative recordsdata.

The recordsdata included social media posts and journal entries by which Albers, a highschool junior, seemed to be battling psychological well being points.

On Jan. 20, 2018, police had been known as to his house after a buddy expressed concern that he could also be intoxicated and feeling suicidal, saying he had threatened to stab himself with a knife.

On the time of the decision, simply earlier than nightfall, Albers was house alone whereas his household had gone out for dinner.

Dashcam movies and a neighbor’s safety digital camera confirmed Jenison and one other officer arriving on the house. They stayed for a couple of minutes exterior and didn’t knock on the entrance door or determine themselves. Finally, the storage door of the house swung open, and Jenison unholstered his weapon and moved towards the door as a minivan, which Albers was driving, started to again out slowly and in a straight line.

Jenison reacted, aiming his weapon and yelling, “Cease, cease, cease.” Jenison, who was standing to the appropriate of the van, fired twice towards Albers.

In a lawsuit filed by the household towards town and Jenison, the Albers contend that one or each of the bullets struck {the teenager}, “incapacitating him and rendering him unable to regulate the minivan.”

John Albers.Courtesy of Sheila Albers

The automotive stopped, however then accelerated in reverse, making a U-turn within the driveway and backing up. Jenison fired 11 extra pictures, and the minivan pulled ahead, previous one other police automotive that had simply approached, and coasted in impartial into the driveway of a house throughout the road, in response to the report and dashcam video.

An post-mortem report later confirmed that six bullets had struck Albers. A toxicology report indicated that he had not been below the affect of medication or alcohol.

In an interview with investigators following the capturing, Jenison mentioned that he had taken cowl exterior of the house as a result of he did not know if Albers would “self-harm or if he additionally has homicidal tendencies.”

The Albers household settled its criticism towards Overland Park and Jenison in 2019 for $2.3 million, The Washington Put up reported, though town and Jenison didn’t admit legal responsibility and Overland Park mentioned it settled to keep away from the fee and size of a lawsuit.

NBC Information has reached out to Jenison, the Overland Park Police Division, town of Overland Park and the Johnson County District Lawyer’s Workplace for remark following the Division of Justice’s choice within the case.

Below the Biden administration, federal prosecutors have pursued federal civil rights expenses towards law enforcement officials in different high-profile circumstances, most just lately towards two present and two former law enforcement officials in Louisville, Kentucky, concerned in a raid that led to the demise of Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old medical employee.

If you happen to or somebody you recognize is susceptible to suicide, please name the Nationwide Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, textual content TALK to 741741 or go to SpeakingOfSuicide.com/assets for added assets.

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