SALEM, Ore. -- Oregon’s attorney general and a district attorney announced Thursday that a joint investigation will be conducted into the police killing of Robert Delgado in Portland.
The shooting occurred April 16 after a 911 caller reported Delgado had been seen practicing quick-draws in a park with what looked like a pistol but was not pointing it at anyone.
Minutes after officers arrived, Officer Zachary DeLong shot and killed Delgado. It turned out the handgun was a replica.
Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum and Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt expect a grand jury will determine if the use of deadly force was a legal act of self-defense or defense of others.
The investigation will begin after a police probe is concluded. The Portland Police Association union did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Delgado's family previously called for an independent investigation of the shooting. Their attorney, J. Ashlee Albies, has said video of the encounter and witness accounts are “deeply disturbing and alarming.”
“We see that Robert is having a mental health crisis,” she said. “He is clearly struggling to keep his composure and we hear the way that the police were responding.”
DeLong fired at Delgado from behind a tree about 90 feet away.
Delgado suffered from anxiety and depression and had been living outside and staying with friends, according to his family and court records, the Oregonian/OregonLive has reported. His sister said he struggled with substance abuse addiction.
Rosenblum will assign an assistant attorney general to work with two Multnomah County deputy district attorneys to oversee the criminal investigation.
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