No Charges in Deadly Officer-Involved Shooting

COLUMBIA, SC — A white police officer who shot and killed a black teenager in Columbia, South Carolina has been cleared of any wrongdoing and will not face charges.

The officer stopped 17-year-old Joshua Ruffin on April 8 to question him about several car break-ins that had just happened. Solicitor Byron Gipson says the officer’s body camera video shows Ruffin run from the officer, then pull a gun out of a bag before the officer fired shots, one of which hit Ruffin in the head.

“He had a reasonable belief that Mr. Ruffin posed an immediate threat capable of inflicting death or great bodily harm,” said Gipson.

Witnesses who saw what happened originally thought that Ruffin had fired at the officer, but investigators say his gun never fired. The officer remains on administrative duty.