New Information Released About Man Killed By CMPD K-9 Officer; Parents Say Shooting Was Justified

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — We’re learning more about the man killed by a  K-9 officer in West Charlotte.

CMPD released the names of the robbery suspect and officer. The robbery suspect has been identified as 32-year-old Michael Kelley.

According to the North Carolina Department of Public Safety database, Kelley just got of jail in April. Police say Kelley was the suspect in two robberies in South Charlotte that ended with a shooting in West Charlotte.

Wednesday, officers were searching for a robbery suspect who went inside a South End Presbyterian Church on Freehand Lane. The Pastor of that church tells WCCB a man who identified himself as Mike Kelley, came to the church for information about Christianity.

Then a short time later, Kelley slashed the Pastor with a box cutter.

“After we got out the door, he turned and raised his hand and said, I’ll kill you. Give me your money, your wallet, your telephone and your keys,” says Pastor Larry James.

Police say Kelley stole Pastor James’ car.

Not long after, Kelley robbed the Family Dollar on West Tyvola and left the Infiniti. Store employees tell WCCB he had a small gun that was hidden by his hand.

Police say K-9 officer Timothy Kiefer found a man who fit the Kelley’s description a short time later at a shopping center off West Boulevard and Remount Road.

Officer Kiefer confronted that suspect. Police say Kelley was ignoring Officer Kiefer’s commands and sprinted toward him, and the officer felt threatened. That’s when shots were fired. Kelley died at Atrium Health.

CMPD says they found a knife at the scene.

The parents of Kelley, who they call “Danny”, say the officer was justified in shooting him.

They told the Observer in a statement, “It is our belief at this time that the actions of Danny left the officer with no  other reasonable course of action than to use deadly force to protect himself and the community at large.”

Kelley’s arrest record dates back to 2014. His priors include robbery, assault with a deadly weapon and resisting an officer.

Officer Kiefer remains on paid administrative leave while CMPD’s internal investigation continues, which is standard procedure.