A Black Bossier City, Louisiana, police officer has been cleared in the October 25 shooting death of a scissors-wielding white woman who screamed racist epithets at him, refused to follow commands, and continued to approach him despite many warnings, KSLA News reports.
Shannon Rupert, 45, was standing behind the reception desk of a La Quinta Inn hotel lobby in Bossier City speaking rapidly on the phone and waving around a pair of scissors. Officer Patrick Edmonds, Jr., responding to a disturbance call, entered and told her repeatedly to put them down.
Body cam footage shows Rupert dismissing Edmonds’ commands and saying, “I’m not putting [the scissors] down. You’re going to have to shoot me, n—-r.”
Edmonds continued to tell Rupert to put down the scissors, as the woman came from behind the desk, scissors still in hand, and walked toward him.
“Hey!” Edmonds yelled, “If you come over here, I will kill you.”
“Ok, kill me,” Rupert said as she continued to aggressively approach Edmonds.
Edmonds fired two shots, striking Rupert in the upper torso, according to a statement from the Bossier City Police Department.
The entire incident lasted under one minute.
“Based on all evidence reviewed, it is my firm opinion that no crime was committed by the officer as his actions constituted justifiable homicide,” District Attorney Schuyler Marvin wrote in a letter sent to Bossier Police Chief Shane McWilliams on Monday.
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Rupert was taken to a Shreveport, Louisiana, hospital where she was later pronounced dead.
“I knew she had been into drugs really bad. I tried helping her,” Melinda Peterson, Rupert’s cousin, told KSLA. I tried talking to her to see if maybe we could get her some help, a recourse. Getting her into rehab or anything like that. She was just out of it.”
Though the shooting was deemed to be justifiable homicide, Edmonds, who was placed on administrative leave following the shooting, will remain so pending an internal investigation into whether he followed departmental policies.