The Latest: Family says they could have helped in standoff | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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The Latest: Family says they could have helped in standoff

Detective Brad Tucker with the Billings Police Department displays a rifle at the Yellowstone County Courthouse in Billings, Mont., Wednesday, June 20, 2018, allegedly used by Frank Joey Half Jr. during a standoff with authorities last November that ended with officers killing Half. (AP Photo/Matthew Brown)
June 20, 2018 - 2:58 PM

BILLINGS, Mont. - The Latest on a coroner's inquest on an officer-involved shooting in Billings (all times local):

3:20 p.m.

Family members of a man killed by Montana police after a 10-hour standoff in which more than 100 shots were fired say the suspect's life could have been spared if authorities had worked harder to defuse the situation.

Anita Little Head said Wednesday that her brother, suspect Frank Joe Half, Jr., was a Crow Indian who might have given himself up if police had brought in a relative to reason with him.

Half's uncle, Ben Cloud, said he was en route to the scene of the standoff last November when Half was killed.

A coroner's jury is considering whether Half's killing was justified. Police say Half broke into a Billings sporting goods store, armed himself with several weapons and appeared intent on ambushing officers.

9:25 a.m.

A coroner's jury is hearing evidence as it considers whether Billings police officers were justified in shooting and killing a man after a 10-hour standoff at a sporting goods store.

Officers testified Tuesday that Frank Joe Half Jr. appeared to be trying to bait officers into coming into the store and fired numerous shots during the November standoff, including one that hit the bulletproof window of an armoured police vehicle with an officer inside.

The Billings Gazette reports the inquest continues Wednesday with the jurors being taken to the Big Bear Sports Center, which has since closed.

Officer Ben Milam testified the standoff ended when Half opened a side door and put his hands up, then retreated inside before sticking a rifle out the door. Officers fired at Half, killing him.

News from © The Associated Press, 2018
The Associated Press

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