Eau Claire (WQOW) - An investigation in an officer-involved shooting has wrapped up.
On Tuesday, Eau Claire County District Attorney Gary King concluded that Officer James Konkel, was justified in the use of lethal force in the fatal officer-involved shooting that killed Gregory Kever, 25, of Eau Claire.
Police said Officer James Konkel, a 20 year veteran with the Eau Claire Police Department, responded to a property at Westwinds Apartments, located at the 2200 block of Peters Drive in Eau Claire, on April 8, 2017. Police said they received a report of a person yelling loudly, “Why am I still alive, why am I still here...," and “acting strange”.
During the investigation, Konkel told authorities he saw Kever making “rapid body movements, head bobbing in a jerking motion, yelling and appearing to be talking to someone who was not there”.
Konkel said he saw Kever holding a knife that appeared to be about 12 inches to 14 inches in length. Konkel notified other officers who were responding to the scene to load less lethal bean bag rounds and to use caution. Police said Officers Konkel, Putzy, Olson and Deputy Sommers responded shortly after.
Police said Kever was walking towards them with the knife and holding it in an “aggressive manner” while making “stabbing motions”. They said he attempted to also open the front driver-side door handle of an officer's squad car, but was unsuccessful in opening it.
According to the report, officers made at least 12 commands for Kever to drop the knife. Officers fired non-lethal bean bag rounds and a taser, but they did not stop Kever from advancing at them; that was when Officer Konkel fired two gun shots at Kever.
Police performed life-saving measures on Kever, but they were not successful. Kever died at the scene.
In the investigation, police issued a search warrant to search Kever's apartment and vehicle. Authorities located a lunch box with five pieces of “rainbow colored soft candy in a tinfoil wrapper. An analysis by the State Crime Laboratory of one of the candy pieces contained LSD (Lysergic Acid Diethylamide).
An autopsy report indicated Kever tested positive for LSD and Cannabinoids.
King said in the report that Kever “displayed concerning and aggressive behavior” during the incident. He said the investigation revealed Kever had a consistent history of drug use, including Kever's last text message on April 8 referencing drug use.
Police said Officer Konkel is back on duty at this time. However, the Eau Claire Police Department said their administrative review is still underway. They plan to release more information when their review has concluded.
The La Crosse Police Department conducted the comprehensive investigation.