St. Joseph Co. Prosecutor Releases New Info In Officer Involved Shooting That Killed Eric Logan

Jun 17, 2019

Sgt. Ryan O'Neill
Credit South Bend Police Dept.

Ken Cotter, the St. Joseph County Prosecutor, says Sgt. Ryan O'Neill, the officer who fired at Eric Logan, did not have his body camera or vehicle camera activated. 

Cotter says the camera activations occur if a squad car's overhead lights are on, if a squad car is traveling at a high rate of speed or if the officer physically turns the camera on. 

So Cotter says there is no video from the incident itself. 

Cotter says officers did not want to wait for an ambulance, so they loaded Logan into a squad car and took him to the hospital. The officer who transported Logan was Aaron Knepper. Knepper has had a troubled past with the South Bend Police Department. 

Cotter says the knife Logan had was allegedly taken from a car that had been broken into. It was a fixed blade knife 6 to 8 inches long and the officer who fired claims Logan had the knife raised. O'Neill has told investigators he told Logan repeatedly to drop the knife. The officer claimed Logan was making a grunting or groaning sound as he was coming toward him. O'Neill told investigators he felt he had no choice but to fire. O'Neill did have a taser at the time according to officials at the press conference. O'Neill has been with the department more than 19 years. O'Neill was hit by the knife in the forearm. Cotter says he is not sure if the knife was thrown or if it came out of Logan's hand. 

Two shots were fired. One hit Logan in the liver and lodged near his spine. 

Cotter says investigators have seen body cam video of other officers who arrived on scene afterward. 

Cotter says there are no working cameras in the area that are mounted to buildings that have video of what happened.

"We're trying to find the truth. If there are witnesses, I'd love to be able to hear from them. People have a right to know what's going on with our law enforcement," Cotter said.

SBPD representatives were not at the press conference. Cotter says he has not consulted with the South Bend Mayor's office either.  He says his first concern is the criminal investigation. He is not conducting the investigation into whether protocols were followed. That will be done separately.  

Cotter says it has happened before where officers have taken injured individuals to the hospital.