New York Times
Police say Antifa activists are likely to have shot police officers. His gun suggests that this is not the case.
Seattle — When the U.S. Marshals Service Task Force killed a self-proclaimed Antifa activist in Washington in September, the Trump administration praised the dismissal of a “violent instigator” suspected of murder. Last week, local investigators completed a month-long murder investigation, announcing that activist Michael Reinoehl was likely the first to fire at the authorities, effectively justifying the shooting. However, a review of the investigation documents obtained by the New York Times discounted important pieces of contradictory evidence that Thurston County Security Office investigators had never fired or pointed a gun at Reinoere. It suggests that. Investigators found a used bullet casing in the backseat of Reinoehl’s car and pointed it out as evidence that he probably fired his weapon, according to photos edited by Thurston County officials showing Reinoehl’s pistol. However, the pistol recovered from Reinoehl had a complete clip. The gun was found in his pocket. A federal task force consisting primarily of local law enforcement officers in Washington, signing up for a morning newsletter from the New York Times, attempts to arrest Reinoere on August 29 for the shooting of supporters of the far-right group. I was there. Patriot prayers on the noisy streets of summer protest over race and police. The arrest operation soon went into a shootout, and Reinoere died in a street near his car in a residential area of Lacy, Washington. The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office, where the shooting took place, was not part of the MTF. In announcing that conclusion, the sheriff’s office wrote, “The witness statement indicates that there was a shooting exchange initiated by Reinoere from inside his car.” Spokesman Lieutenant Cameron Simper said investigators could not conclude that Reinoere had fired his weapon, but that it was “likely.” However, one of the witnesses that Thurston County investigators relied on to reach the conclusion that Reinoere fired a gun was an eight-year-old boy. Father Garrett Lewis, who rushed to his son’s side during the shooting, said he consistently believed that the police had fired the first shot without warning. Of the other two witnesses quoted by investigators to support the conclusion that Reinoere fired a gun, one did not see it happen and the other was uncertain. .. Fred Langer, a lawyer representing Reinoehl’s family, said law enforcement conclusions were out of the ordinary. “They cover themselves,” Langer said. “Physical evidence does not support what they are saying.” Reinoehl consistently participated in racial justice protests in Portland, Oregon last summer, protesters. Having a gun as a volunteer guard between, he wrote online that protests were part of a war that could “fix everything.” Reinoere was on the street on August 29, when a Trump supporter caravan collided with a leftist activist and drove to downtown Portland. Video footage shot by bystanders approaches Aaron Danielson, a supporter of patriot prayer, as Danielson walks through the area with a can of bear repellent and an expandable baton. It seems to indicate that. Reinoere seems to have shot and killed Danielson before rushing into the night. He later claimed in an interview with Vice News that he had been fired for self-defense. Five days after the shooting, Portland police issued a warrant that Reinoere was arrested on suspicion of murder. The Pacific Northwest Violent Criminal Task Force, represented by a local law enforcement officer on behalf of the United States Marshals Service, has planned a journey to Washington State in Reinoere and detained him. An investigation by Thurston County investigators obtained by the Times provided important new details, including a witness statement, from their months-long investigation into events prior to Reinoere’s death. Police officers believed that Reinoere had a .380 caliber pistol, an AR-style rifle, and a shotgun, according to the explanation given to the investigators. They said they had received information (obviously from the informant) that Reinoere had said he should not live. Police officials expressed concern that Reinoere was associated with “Antifa,” a loose network of activists mobilized to confront the far-right group and protest law enforcement violence. According to their statement, on September 3, police officers took up a surveillance position near the apartment where Reinoehl was staying. Once on the scene, the radio frequencies they chose only worked for some officers, and others couldn’t communicate. Just before 7 pm, the team saw Reinoehl leaving the apartment and heading for his car. Sgt. Eric Clarkson, a senior officer on the scene at the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office, told others, “If no one is far enough to stop him, let him drive.” I couldn’t hear his orders as a result of his problems. In his statement. Police officer Michael Merrill of the Lakewood Police Department decided to move in and bombarded Ford Escape at Reinoere’s parked Volkswagen Jetta. No video has appeared showing what happened next, and sometimes ambiguous combinations of inconsistent information are used to explain it. None of the police officers wore body cameras, nor were they mounted on the vehicle. A deputy US Marshal named Ryan Kimmel, one of the police officers on the scene, did not fire his weapon, but refused to make a statement during the investigation. James Oleor, Deputy Sheriff of Pierce County in the passenger seat of Merrill’s Ford Escape, said Reinoere was in Jetta’s driver’s seat and armed when law enforcement vehicles were pulled up and police officers announced themselves. Moved “in line with the movement” using. It’s made when someone is trying to grab their own gun. He didn’t see the gun, but he started firing his AR-15 rifle through his own windshield at Reinoere, Oleor said. Merrill thought it meant that a piece of windshield glass was firing, so he left Ford Escape, saw what Reinoel believed he had a gun, and fired. Similarly, a third officer of the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office tracked other officers on an SUV and blocked Reinoere’s Jetta diagonally. He also fired with a 9mm pistol, believing that Reinoere was trying to get a gun. After the police unleashed a total of 40 bullet hail, Reinoere left Jetta and ran to hide behind the truck parked behind him. Three police officers reported that he was continuously reaching around his waistband or pockets. A Washington State Corrections Bureau employee, arriving in a third vehicle, saw Reinoel roaming the back of the truck and began pulling “small dark items” out of his pocket. The policeman was also fired and Reinoere collapsed. No police officer said Reinoel had shot them, and only one said he had raised what could be a gun, but investigators concluded that Reinoel was likely to have fired. It was. Matched a .380 caliber pistol in his pocket. Investigators did not find a matching bullet in dozens of bullets being sprayed around the scene. All bullets that pierced Jetta’s windshield were determined to be bullets fired by police officers. A sympathizer at the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office said Reinoere may have fired through an open passenger seat window. The final report also does not address that the 6-round clip of the pistol was still full when police officers recovered it. Simper said he could have loaded the chamber with extra ammunition before Reinoere fired, and the gun could have malfunctioned and couldn’t load the ammunition from the clip after taking the shot. To reach their conclusion that Reinoehl fired his gun, investigators also quoted the statements of three witnesses. One of them, Chad Smith, initially told journalists that he had seen Reinoel shooting a police officer, but later did not see Reinoel shooting. He reported to investigators that he believed that Reinoel shot first because the first shot he heard was weaker than the later shots. Another witness told investigators that he believed there was a shooting exchange. A man who asked not to reveal his identity publicly said in an interview on Friday that he was uncertain whether Reinoere had fired his weapon. Louis’ eight-year-old son told police that Reinoere was shooting an agent. But when asked what kind of gun Reinoere fired, he described it as “big” and “with both hands.” This did not match Reinoere’s pocket-sized pistol. Louis was told that his children were police officers “heroes,” but investigators interviewing his son told him that Reinoel had fired his weapons. I said the question. “He told me that he didn’t know he had a weapon for the first 24 hours,” he said. This article was originally published in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company