Oklahoma highway Patrol trooper Mike Moler and Oklahoma City police officer Jared Jackson have been cleared of any wrongdoing in an officer-involved use of deadly force incident from back in March, Oklahoma County district attorney David Prater announced today.
The incident began when Moler tried to perform a routine traffic stop near SE 74th and Douglas in Oklahoma City. The deceased, George Lee Seaton, refused to cooperate with Moler and sped away. A chase then ensued and Jackson joined in.
The chase ended at SE 32nd and Kelley when Seeton skidded into the front yard of a home. Then, Seeton started backing up towards Jackson.
Prater describes the scene in his statement:
Moler advised that he thought Seeton was attempting to hit Officer Jackson with the vehicle. Moler began to shoot at Seeton in an attempt to prevent Seeton from striking Jackson with the vehicle. AS Seeton was driving at him, Jackson moved to the left to avoid being hit. Jackson began to shoot at Seeton in an attempt to defend himself.
Seeton was shot in the gunfire and died at the scene.
Prater also made the distinction between the officers' decision to use deadly force and the use of deadly force. Both were deemed lawful and justified.