Board reviews evidence, concludes force justified in shooting incident
An independent shooting review board has determined that a Carbon County deputy justifiably used deadly force in connection with a violent incident earlier this year in Price.
On Jan. 10 at approximately 2:21 p.m., representatives from the Utah Department of Corrections, the sheriff's office and city police department responded to a private residence in northeast Price to control an individual under the jurisdiction of the local adult probation office.
According to the Price police department's preliminary investigation, probation officers had contacted Tony Lee Taylor earlier in the day due to the 22-year-old subject's allegedly violent behavior.
The young man had visited a mental health treatment center earlier in the morning on the date in question, indicated the Price City Police Department's preliminary incident report.
However, the subject's violent behavior apparently persisted and Taylor's family subsequently contacted adult parole officers for assistance in controlling the subject.
When law enforcement personnel arrived at the private residence that afternoon, the young man purportedly fled through the apartment into the kitchen area.
Price Policeman Dave Cart-wright, Carbon County Deputy Tory Christiansen and state corrections agent Jeff Wood pursued the subject through the apartment.
Taylor reportedly attacked the officers with a kitchen knife and attempts to restrain the young man failed.
After the subject obtained a larger knife and started slashing at the officers, Christiansen fired his service weapon once to prevent Taylor from injuring the law enforcement authorities.
County ambulance and Price city emergency crews transported the injured man to the hospital, where the subject later died from a single gunshot wound to the stomach.
Following the Jan. 10 incident, Carbon County Attorney Gene Strate requested assistance from an independent panel in reviewing the evidence and issuing an official determination in the fatal shooting.
Based on a thorough evaluation of the information gathered by Price city police investigators, the independent board has determined that Taylor's actions posed a serious, potentially deadly threat to the law enforcement officers present at the scene on Jan. 10, indicated a written decision issued by the county attorney's office last week.
"The shooting review board has concluded that Deputy Tory Christiansen was justified in using deadly force against Mr. Taylor," pointed out Strate.
"I have also reviewed the investigative reports," explained the county attorney. "I believe that the shooting review board is correct in its determination and I also find that Deputy Christiansen was justified in the use of deadly force."
"His failure to act would have likely resulted in serious bodily injury or death to the peace officers involved," concluded Strate.