Police disciplined over homeless man's death
SAGINAW — A Saginaw police supervisor has been demoted and two officers have been disciplined for their roles in the fatal shooting of a knife-wielding, mentally ill homeless man in a parking lot, city officials said Friday.
The on-scene supervisor during the July 1 shooting of Milton Hall, 49, was reprimanded and demoted to the rank of patrolman, Acting Police Chief Brian Lipe said, and the two officers being disciplined received reprimands for not following the department's mobile video and audio policy.
The command officer "failed to take command and control of the situation," Lipe said at a news conference. Some patrol car video was working, but some in-car audio wasn't turned on and some of the microphones worn by the officers didn't have working batteries, he said.
The officers involved all will return to active duty, said Lipe, who defended the officers' overall response. Their names weren't released.
"Mr. Hall didn't just have something in his hand that day," Lipe said. "He had a deadly weapon."
According to investigators, Hall refused to drop a knife and six officers fired 46 shots at him, hitting him 11 times. Video taken on another witness's cellphone and later obtained by CNN showed Hall collapsing in a hail of gunfire after police ordered him to drop the knife.
The Revs. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton and U.S. Rep. John Conyers protested the killing and called for the officers to be punished.
Armed cancer patient thwarts robbery
LAKETON TOWNSHIP — A 63-year-old man with stage 4 lymphoma, steady nerves and a double-barreled shotgun thwarted a break-in at his western Michigan home and convinced two suspects to surrender, police said.
Dixon Smith said he confronted the two young men just before noon Thursday after they climbed the stairs to the second floor of his home in Muskegon County's Laketon Township.
Smith and police believe one of the suspects picked the front door lock with a credit card.
"I'm still trying to calm down," Smith, who was home alone working in his second-story loft, told MLive.com for a story published Friday. "Within three minutes I see a guy with a hoodie walking past my front window."
Smith, whose lymphoma currently is in remission, ordered the two to lie down and held them at bay with the loaded gun while he called 911 and waited for police, who arrived after "kind of a long" five-to-10-minute wait.
Smith said he spent the time holding his shotgun on the two suspects, who assured him they wouldn't try anything and eventually surrendered to police. No one was injured.
Police disciplined over homeless man's death
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