Boise police officer won’t be charged in February shooting

An officer who shot and killed a Boise man at a home on Malad Street in February will not face criminal charges because he was acting within Boise Police Department policy and protecting his fellow officers and the neighborhood, the department announced Thursday.

Here’s what happened, according to a BPD news release detailing the findings of an independent review:

On Feb. 16 around 1:20 a.m., police responded to calls reporting a disturbance. Witnesses said Michael Kenneth Casper, 26, of Boise was breaking windows with a crowbar. BPD Officer Jason Green was the first to arrive on scene; he heard breaking glass and gunshots. He approached Casper’s residence and heard two more shots. Casper was in the house near a window, holding a gun, according to the news release.

Green asked Casper to lower his weapon three times, but Casper shouldered the weapon as if preparing to fire. The weapon was pointed in the direction of another police officer who was approaching in the residential neighborhood. Green fired three shots at the wall in front of Casper. Casper pulled back, then pointed the gun out of the window. Green shot up to five more shots.

Neighbors were evacuated. When a SWAT team entered the house, they found Casper dead. Investigators found multiple shots into vehicles, fences and houses across the street from Casper’s house, consistent with Officer Green’s account.

Twin Falls County Prosecutor Grant Loebs was brought on to review the fatal shooting to determine whether to press charges against Green. The Ada County Critical Incident Task Force routinely requests independent reviews of officer-involved shootings.

“After a review of all the available evidence, which included autopsy reports, witness interviews, crime scene photographs, etc., I have concluded that the death of Mr. Casper was the result of Officer Green’s lawful use of deadly force in the attempt to defend himself, other law enforcement officers, and members of the public from Mr. Casper, who was then shooting a firearm at police who responded to a disturbance at his house,” Loebs said in a statement provided by BPD.

Bill Bones, BPD chief of police, agreed with the outcome of the prosecutor’s review.

“The actions of the suspect placed his neighbors and responding officers in extreme danger. Considering the first officer, Officer Green, arrived on scene as shots were being fired toward neighboring homes, toward himself and toward other officers, his response to the violent actions of the suspect likely saved others from serious harm,” Bones said in a statement.

According to his obituary, “Mikee” Casper was a lifelong Boise resident who graduated from Boise High School and worked at Winco Foods for eight years.