TOWAOC, Colo. (AP) — U.S. Attorney John Walsh says a Bureau of Indian Affairs officer justifiably fired a deadly shot at a hatchet-wielding suspect who was a member of the Ute Mountain Ute American Indian tribe.

In a letter sent Tuesday to Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Chairman Gary Hayes , Walsh says Lt. Joseph Keel reasonably concluded that he faced death of serious bodily harm from Spencer Posey. Keel told FBI investigators that Posey yelled that he was going to kill him and charged at Keel with a hatchet in hand early May 22.

Keel fired a single shot, striking Posey in the abdomen. Posey died the next day.

Keel had responded to a report of a shirtless, intoxicated man outside a home in Towaoc in southwestern Colorado.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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