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Prosecutor: Deputy involved in Dec. 2020 shooting 'acted in lawful self-defense'

Daniel Russel Shooting Scene.JPG
Posted at 2:00 PM, Jun 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-30 14:00:45-04

OSHTEMO TOWNSHIP, Mich.  — A Kalamazoo County prosecutor says a deputy acted in "lawful self-defense" when he shot and killed a stabbing suspect in Dec. 2020.

The deputy-involved shooting happened at a home on Morningstar Way in Oshtemo Township after 7 a.m. on Dec. 18, 2020.

According to the Kalamazoo County Sheriff's Office, deputies responded to a call where a suspect, later identified as Daniel Russell, was threatening to hurt himself with a knife.

Upon arrival, a lone deputy was confronted by Russell with a knife.

The deputy fired three shots, killing Russell.

Kalamazoo County Sheriff's Office later discovered it was the scene of a stabbing.

The stabbed victims were Russell's mother and her partner, who were both transported to the hospital. Both survived.

After reviewing the incident, the Kalamazoo County Office3 of the Prosecuting Attorney ruled the deputy "acted in lawful self-defense" in his use of deadly force, saying Russell’s actions "posed an immediate and extreme threat of death or serious injury to the deputy and others."

The prosecutor also stated, “This is a tragic and unfortunate death. Daniel was a great person who was struggling with mental illness in the last months of his life. That illness contributed to the events of Dec. 18th. However, it does not change the circumstances as they presented themselves to law enforcement that day.”