An inquest has been ordered into the fatal shooting by Seattle police of a man who pointed a replica handgun at officers on Jan. 20.
Andrew Law, 26, was shot and killed by an officer who saw him carrying a realistic “replica” handgun, interim Seattle Police Chief Harry Bailey said at the time.
But Officer Jason Atofau didn’t know that when he shot Law, who later died from his wounds.
Atofau and other officers were called to the Sodo area around 9:40 p.m. on a report of a man stumbling around waving a gun at a bus stop. When officers arrived, Law pointed the replica gun at them, and Atofau fired, police said.
Police said that before Law was shot, officers ordered him to put down his weapon.
King County Executive Dow Constantine ordered the inquest on a recommendation by King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg after his office reviewed materials from the Seattle Police Department, which conducted the investigation.
Inquests are fact-finding hearings conducted before a six-member jury. Inquest jurors answer a series of interrogatories to determine the significant factual issues involved in the case. It is not their purpose to determine whether any person or agency is civilly or criminally liable.