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Officer in Case That Shook Buttigieg Campaign Resigns

Ryan O'Neill fatally shot a black man last month
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 16, 2019 1:40 AM CDT
In this Sunday, June 23, 2019 photo, John Winston Jr. interrupts a representative of the Rev. Al Sharpton during a town hall community meeting, at Washington High School in South Bend, Ind.   (Robert Franklin/South Bend Tribune via AP, File)
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(Newser) – A white Indiana police officer who fatally shot a black man, sparking protests and roiling the presidential campaign of South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, has resigned, the local police union announced Monday. The Fraternal Order of Police said Sgt. Ryan O'Neill's resignation from the South Bend Police Department was due to stress and media attention given to last month's shooting of Eric Logan. The union also pointed to "hateful things said on social media," the AP reports. "Sgt. O'Neill did his job and was forced to defend his own life from a convicted felon who was armed with an eight-inch hunting knife," FOP president Harvey Mills said in a release. "We're confident that the investigation into the shooting will determine that the action he took was justified based on the law and his training."

Authorities have said O'Neill was responding to a report of a person breaking into cars on June 16 and confronted the 54-year-old Logan, and that the officer said he shot Logan after he refused orders to drop a knife. A judge has appointed a special prosecutor to investigate the shooting, which authorities said was not recorded by O'Neill's body camera. Protesters have called for police reforms and questioned South Bend's body camera and use of force policies. The shooting prompted Buttigieg to leave the campaign trail for several days to answer questions about public safety and race. In a statement Monday, Buttigieg said efforts to strengthen trust between law enforcement and community members continue. "We will await results of the independent criminal investigation, and apply any lessons learned to our work on the future of the Police Department and the community," he said in the statement.

(Read more Indiana stories.)

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