A Duluth police officer was justified in shooting to death a teenager as he repeatedly smashed the officer's squad car with a baseball bat and ignored warnings to halt, according to an official review of the case released Wednesday.
Joey Carl was killed the night of Aug. 5 by officer Jeff Keast, who was called to the family's home after the boy argued with his father and then took the bat to televisions, windows, a vehicle and other items at the home.
Earlier that evening, Keast had picked up Carl at a loud party in Duluth and gave him a preliminary breath test, according to the review. Registering a 0.105 percent blood-alcohol content, Carl was ticketed for minor consumption. Keast then drove him home.
The review, conducted by Scott County Attorney Pat Ciliberto on behalf of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, mirrored much of what police said had happened in the moments leading up to Carl's death.
When Keast arrived, Carl ran up to the squad car and repeatedly slammed its windshield, body and front end with the bat.
The officer began backing up the car, sideswiping a parked vehicle before stopping.
Carl then swung at the driver's door window, shattering the glass as the officer was still seated behind the wheel. Witnesses described Carl as "in a rage" and taunting police with profanity-laced challenges. "I'll take all you ... on and take all you guys out," he was heard saying at one point.
Keats twice ordered Carl to "put it down" in reference to the bat, the review read.
As Carl beat on the squad car, his father, Anthony Carl, yelled, "Joey, Joey, stop, stop, please."
The officer shot Carl once, hitting him in the chest. Despite attempts by other officers to revive Carl, he died at the scene.
A post-mortem test found that Carl tested positive for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.
"Given the facts of this situation," Ciliberto wrote, " ... Keast appropriately utilized the use of deadly force" based on the law.
Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482