MISSOULA – A coroner’s jury determined that Missoula police were justified when they shot and killed a homeless man who fired a gun at them.
The jury heard evidence Monday in the shooting of 46-year-old Gregory Baumann, who was shot Dec. 21 as police tried to arrest him on two Justice Court warrants involving drugs.
Baumann, who had a history of schizophrenia, was camping in a park on the south shore of the Clark Fork River when officer Matt Kaczynski approached him. Once he determined Baumann’s identity, officers tried to arrest him.
Kaczynski, along with officer Eric Corbett and Lt. Geron Wade pulled their guns after Baumann told them they “better shoot him or he would shoot them,” Kaczynski testified.
Corbett sprayed Baumann with pepper spray, Baumann fired a .45 pistol in the direction of the officers and Corbett and Wade returned fire. Baumann was struck by eight bullets.
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