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No charges after police killing of Black man ruled justified

A strip of yellow crime scene tape with police lights in the background. (WISH Photo from file)

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Northern Indiana police officers won’t be charged in the fatal July shooting of a Black man because authorities determined they feared for their lives when he brandished what turned out of be a fake handgun during a tense standoff.

The St. Joseph County Prosecutor’s Office says 51-year-old Dante Kittrell’s killing was ruled a “justifiable homicide” under state law and the South Bend officers who shot him won’t face criminal charges.

Kittrell was shot July 29 as he was reportedly dealing with a mental health crisis near an elementary school.

He was shot during a police standoff after he pulled out what looked like a handgun but which was in fact an airsoft gun fashioned to appear like a Glock handgun. and pointed it at officers.