State Watch

No charges filed in fatal Secret Service shooting outside ambassador’s residence

Washington Metropolitan Police blocks the street leading towards the Peruvian ambassador’s residence in northwest Washington, Wednesday, April 20, 2022. U.S. Secret Service officers shot “an intruder” Wednesday at the residence of the Peruvian ambassador to the United States in Washington, authorities said. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Federal prosecutors aren’t filing charges against two Secret Service officers who shot and killed a 19-year-old outside the residence of Peru’s ambassador to the United States, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. 

The U.S. attorney’s office said there was insufficient evidence to pursue federal criminal civil rights or D.C. charges and prove that the officers, who were not named, used excessive force under the circumstances. 

The officers responded earlier this year to reports of a burglary in process at the Peruvian ambassador’s D.C. residence, where staff had reported seeing Gordon Casey of Germantown, Md., break windows and attempt to breach the building while armed with a metal pole. 

The Department of Justice (DOJ) says Casey didn’t comply with the two responding officers’ orders to drop the pole and that a stun gun had “no apparent effect.” Casey then approached the Secret Service officers with the pole, prompting both to fire their weapons, according to the DOJ. 

The events prompted the U.S. attorney’s office to conduct a use-of-force investigation and review the fatality with the Metropolitan Police Department. 

To pursue charges in such cases, prosecutors are typically required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the officers willfully used excessive force, acting with specific and deliberate intent to use more force than was reasonably necessary.  

The U.S. attorney’s office in this case reported the investigation did not find enough evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that either officer used excessive force during the incident.

Tags DC DOJ Peruvian ambassador U.S. Attorney's Office USAO
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