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Deputy who shot armed suspect after a 13-mile chase was 'justified'

It's rare for an officer to be criminally charged in use-of-force incidents.

A sheriff's deputy was "reasonable and justified" when he shot an armed man following a police chase in northern Minnesota last month.

That's what St. Louis County Attorney Mark Rubin and former Assistant County Attorney Vern Swanum decided after reviewing reports from the Nov. 22 incident, a news release says.

Early that morning, Deputy Tim Officer was among the officers pursuing 27-year-old Aaron Boshey. Boshey led them on a chase, before getting out of the car and running into the woods, authorities said. Officer saw Boshey holding a gun, so he fired his weapon.

Boshey was wearing a bullet-resistant vest, but suffered gunshot wounds to his butt and left hand.

For more on the decision not to charge Officer, click here.

Charges against officers are rare

The St. Louis County Attorney's Office did not call a grand jury to consider charges against Officer, which goes against common practice in many officer use-of-force cases.

This is among a handful of recent cases – including two high-profile, officer-involved shootings in Minnesota (Jamar Clark by Minneapolis police and Philando Castile by a St. Anthony officer) – where potential charges were considered by the county attorney's office instead.

This came after controversy over grand juries in recent years, with some arguing it rarely results in charges against officers.

According to the Star Tribune’s database, over the past 16 years, only one officer who has been involved in an on-duty use-of-force incident – St. Anthony police officer Jeronimo Yanez – has been charged with a crime. That decision came from the Ramsey County Attorney, without the use of a grand jury.

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