County Attorney: Deadly Force justified in Panora, Iowa shooting

GUTHRIE CENTER, Iowa-  The Guthrie County Attorney says a Panora Police officer's use of deadly force, at an apartment complex July 3rd, was justified.

Police encountered a knife-wielding man, who had been acting violently, and threatening people, including law enforcement, and refusing to drop the weapon when ordered to do so. 

Officer Rock Armstrong fired at 26 year-old Joshua Reed of New Virgina, killing him.

Guthrie County Attorney Mary Benton says after conducting interviews and looking evidence in the case, deadly use of force was reasonable.

Benton's report details what happened the evening of July 3rd.   It also includes information from Lake Panorama Security Officer Gary Freeland, who is also a Reserve Guthrie County Sheriff's Deputy.  Freeland says he arrived at the apartment complex, after hearing radio traffic concerning a man with a knife.   Freeland reported he saw Officer Armstrong and a man who had called 911 walk into the property. Freeland reported hearing threats from the stairs, such as "You better pull the (expletive) trigger." Freeland says he watched as the subject (Joshua Reed) came out of the apartment and  peered around the wall a couple of time, continuing to make threats, when he came into the hallway and charged at Officer Armstrong.

Freeland says he reported hearing Reed say things like "You better shoot," "You better shoot now."  

Armstrong told investigators he shouted commands to "Put the knife down" and "Drop the knife." Armstrong says Reed charged at him down a hallway with a large butcher knife in his hand.

Armstrong, who had drawn his weapon, fired upon Reed as he charged at him screaming.  Armstrong fired three, quick successive rounds from his gun and Reed fell to the ground.   Freeland also saw Reed charging down the hallway and watched as Armstrong fired.

Authorities name Panora, Iowa officer and armed man shot - Thumbnail Image

Authorities name Panora, Iowa officer and armed man shot

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