TACOMA — The Pierce County prosecutor says two Lakewood, Wash., police officers were justified in fatally shooting a 28-year-old man who lunged at them with what turned out to be a realistic toy replica handgun.
Patrick O’Meara was hit three times in the June 18 confrontation with Officers Darrell Moore and Jeremy Vahle.
Police had a felony arrest warrant for the man. When they found him at a home, he was holding what appeared to be a handgun to his head.
Prosecutor Mark Lindquist said Thursday that the man refused to comply with repeated orders to drop the gun, then suddenly lunged toward the officers while moving his gun in their direction. They fired.
The prosecutor said that during two prior arrests, the man told Lakewood police he wanted them to kill him. He was also high on meth.