DuPage County State's Attorney Robert Berlin ruled Monday that a police-involved shooting in March was "necessary to prevent death or great bodily harm."
The police officers involved in the incident were reinstated to their positions following Berlin’s verdict.
and officials from the State’s Attorney's Office were investigating the shooting, . Police responded that morning to a 911 call made from a second-floor apartment at 1135 W. Ogden Ave., where they were told a suicidal man was.
Police shot and killed the man, identified as William C. Ladew, 47, of Aurora, after he approached them wielding a knife.
“Ladew was ordered to drop the knife repeatedly, and he refused,” said a news release sent Tuesday by the . “Ladew advanced toward the officers, and drew the knife into a striking motion. In defense of their lives, two of the officers shot Ladew.”
Berlin issued a statement with the final ruling Monday to Naperville Police Chief David Dial.
“When William Ladew raised a butcher knife in close proximity to three uniformed police officers, the police were confronted with an unlawful threat of deadly force by William Ladew,” it said. “The officers who fired the shots acted lawfully and were justified in the use of deadly force in order to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm.”
Naperville Deputy Police Chief Gary Bolt confirmed last month that Sgt. Steve Schindlbeck fired the gun in the fatal shooting. Schindlbeck, a 19-year veteran of the department, also shot and killed a man who threatened his safety Jan. 23, 2002—the only other time an officer was involved in a fatal shooting in the history of the department, officials have said.
That day, police were called to a Naperville home for a domestic dispute involving David Kasmar, who fired his .357 Magnum at Schindlbeck. He returned fire, fatally shooting Kasmar in the abdomen.
“The taking of a human life is traumatic for all involved,” Dial said Tuesday, in a written statement. “… The officers responded to a deadly threat in compliance with the law and the department’s policies and procedures. Therefore, I have reinstated the officers to full, active duty and I welcome their return to their assignments.”