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Officer-involved shooting found unjustified, officer isn't facing charges

An officer isn't facing charges after the 4th Judicial District found an officer-involved shooting unjustified in May, 2022.
Posted at 10:50 PM, Jan 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-13 00:50:33-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — Colorado's 4th Judicial District Attorney's Office deemed an officer-involved shooting unjustified, but the officer isn't facing charges.

The shooting happened on May 13, 2022, in the 200 block of E. Arvada St. located near The Vanguard School in Colorado Springs.

Former Officer Brandon Lowe with the Colorado Springs Police Department was dispatched to Arvada St. for an individual displaying a weapon. The individual, who was later identified as Osemeke Uwadibie, allegedly asked the caller for a ride. When the caller declined, Uwadibie allegedly grabbed a knife and held it to the caller and his daughter.

Upon arrival, police said Officer Lowe noticed Uwadibie walking out of an apartment and began chasing someone. Officer Lowe asked to speak with Uwadibie, and Lowe was struck in the face with a metal walking cane by Uwadibie.

Officer Lowe then drew his firearm and pointed it at Uwadibie, who then stole Officer Lowe's patrol car, and began driving away. Officer Lowe fired his weapon 3 times, hitting Uwadibie in the arm and shoulder. Multiple officers with the Colorado Springs Police Department responded, and were able to take Uwadibie into custody. Police said officers back at the initial scene located a man dead after they say Uwadibie disemboweled him.

Eight months later, the district attorney's office said the shooting was not justified because Officer Lowe's actions did not meet the requirements for self-defense. However, the office said it does not believe it would be able to successfully charge and prosecute Officer Lowe based on the current legal standards and protections given to law enforcement.

Since the shooting did not result in the death of Uwadibie, the office said there is a different set of laws that apply to how the case can be prosecuted. According to the district attorney's office, one of the circumstances justified for use of force is if the arrest is for a felony involving the use or threatened use of deadly physical force. The office said this standard could be met as Officer Lowe was attempting to arrest Uwadibie for the felony offense of Second Degree Assault, a class 4 felony, or Menacing, a class 5 felony. The district attorney's office said it could also be argued Uwadibie could have caused serious bodily injury or death when striking Officer Lowe with the metal cane.

Another circumstance for justified use of force according to the district attorney's office is if the force employed does not create a substantial risk of injury to other persons. The office said it could be argued Officer Lowe's gunshots were aimed at the interior of the cruiser and he took an effort to not immediately create significant risk or injury to Uwadibie.

Officer Lowe resigned from the Colorado Springs Police Department in December 2022. Uwadibie is currently held in the El Paso County Jail on no bond.

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