DA: Trooper's use of force justified in deadly I-84 shooting - KPTV - FOX 12

DA: Trooper's use of force justified in deadly I-84 shooting

Posted: Updated:
Aug. 29 Aug. 29
John Allen II John Allen II
THE DALLES, OR (KPTV) -

The trooper involved in a shooting on Interstate 84 near The Dalles late last month was justified using deadly force.

That is the ruling of Sherman County District Attorney Wade McLeod, announced Tuesday.

John Allen II, 34, was shot and killed by Oregon State Police Trooper Matthew Zistel at about 1 p.m. Aug. 29.

Investigators said Zistel was working construction zone safety near The Dalles when he stopped Allen for speeding. When Zistel exited his patrol car, Allen stepped out and shot at him, police said. Zistel returned fire, hitting Allen.

The district attorney's office revealed additional details about the shootout on Tuesday.

Allen was wearing camouflaged military fatigues at the time, according to the report. He took an aggressive stance after initially exiting his car with his right hand behind his back.

Zistel explained the reason for the stop and repeatedly asked Allen to get back in his car, according to investigators. However, Allen "aggressively" approached the officer and pulled a gun from his rear waistband.

At that point, the district attorney said Allen "took a combat shooting stance and began firing at Trooper Zistel." The trooper was hit by a bullet on his left side. Allen was shot on the right side of the chest.

"John Van Allen II continued to stalk Trooper Zistel before retreating to his vehicle and leaving the scene," according to the district attorney's report.

Allen was found dead in his car about a half mile away from the shooting scene. He had three children in his car, according to police. The kids - a 10-year-old girl, a 13-year-old boy and a 15-year-old boy - were not hurt.

Allen previously lived in South Carolina and Pennsylvania, but he most recently lived in the Portland area.

Zistel was treated and released at the hospital. He has been with OSP for five years.

The district attorney's report concludes: "At the time Trooper Zistel decided to employ deadly physical force, it was reasonable for him to believe that his life was endangered. Trooper Zistel acted in self defense. Given the overwhelming evidence supporting Trooper Zistel's decision to employ deadly physical force, the District Attorney will not present this case to the Grand Jury."

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