The Sonoma County District Attorney announced today that no charges will be filed against Deputy Erick Gelhaus, the Santa Rosa police officer accused of shooting, and killing, 13-year-old Andy Lopez.
The Santa Rosa Press Democrat has more details:
District Attorney Jill Ravitch said in a statement that investigators concluded Deputy Erick Gelhaus “fired his weapon in response to what he honestly and reasonably believed was an imminent threat of death to himself or others.
“As such, he was lawfully acting in defense of himself or others, and no basis for seeking criminal charges exists,” Ravitch said in the statement.
The incident occurred in October, after Gelhaus fired at Lopez, believing the teen was handling an AK-47. The firearm turned out to be just a replica. KQED has a detailed timeline of the shooting.
Lopez’s death sparked a regional, if not national, debate about police brutality, including a National Day of Action. That National Day of Action came to the Mission with a rally at the BART plaza.