Reports: Fatal shooting of Native woodcarver ruled not justified
The shooting of John T. Williams, a traditional Native woodcarver, was not justified, the Seattle Police Department's Firearms Review Board has determined.

The Seattle Times and KIRO-TV reported that the board made a preliminary finding last week. A final determination won't be made under a county inquest is complete but Officer Ian Birk was ordered to turn surrender his gun and badge.

Birk shot Williams, 50, four times in his side on August 30. Birk has said Williams, who was carrying his carving knife and a piece of wood, ignored his command to drop the knife

Sources told The Seattle Times that Birk waited less than 15 seconds after his command to fire at Williams. Birk reportedly fired his rounds from a distance of nine to 10 feet.

Williams was a member of the was a member of the Dididaht First Nation of British Columbia. He was often seen carving wood in parks around Seattle.

Get the Story:
Woodcarver's shooting by SPD officer ruled not justified in preliminary finding (The Seattle Times 10/15)
Panel Says Woodcarver’s Shooting Not Justified (KIRO-TV 10/14)

Related Stories:
County orders inquest of fatal shooting of Native woodcarver (10/12)
Autopsy: Native carver was shot four times in his side by officer (10/6)
Board in Washington opens probe into shooting of Native man (10/4)
Justice Department monitors probe into shooting of Native man (9/21)
Mayor in Seattle calls officer shooting of Native man an 'injustice' (9/17)
Police department makes changes after First Nations man's death (9/16)
Editorial: Officer shooting of Native man threatens public's trust (9/10)
Police promise better outreach after fatal shooting of Native man (9/9)
Native leaders seek inquiry of police shooting of traditional carver (9/8)
Gyasi Ross: What are we doing about the shooting of Native man? (9/3)
First Nations in mourning after fatal shooting of traditional carver (9/3)
First Nations man shot and killed by officer was deaf in one ear (9/2)
First Nations man shot and killed by police officer in Washington (9/1)