Watch CBS News

Trenton Police Officer Won't Face Charges In Fatal Shooting Of Teen During Lawn Mower Blade Assault

TRENTON (WWJ) - Prosecutors say a Downriver police officer will not face charges in what was found to be a "justified shooting" that resulted in the death of an 18-year-old high school senior.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy released her decision Friday after a months-long investigation in the death of Kyle Baker, who was shot May 28 at a home in Trenton. Worthy said evidence supports that the officer acted in lawful self-defense when he fired his department issued weapon.

"In this case, the officers not only acted in self defense and defense of others, but no shots were fired until after the decedent had seriously injured one of the officers with a lawnmower blade and kept advancing. As a result, no charges against any officer will be issued," Worthy said in a statement.

The incident took place around 4:30 p.m. at Baker's home in the 2800 block of Longmeadow, near West Road. Police responded to the home after being contacted by high school officials, who reported that Baker was exhibiting erratic and paranoid behavior before leaving the campus. Baker's family also corroborated that Baker exhibited out of character behavior leading up to the incident, Worthy said.

To make extra money, Baker ran a small business out of an enclosed porch area of the home, sharpening lawn mower blades, as well as mowing neighborhood lawns.

When police arrived at the home, two officers secured the residence; two other officers entered the house and saw Baker at the bottom of the basement stairs, armed with a two foot long lawn mower blade, according to Worthy. Baker then climbed up the basement stairs toward the officers. He was ordered to stop and drop the weapon several times but‎ he kept advancing, Worthy said.

As Baker continued toward the officers, one officer used a Taser on him twice, with little effect. The other officer used a Taser a third time. At that point, Baker attacked and cut the second officer in the hand with the lawn mower blade, Worthy said.

The officer, who received a serious wound on his hand, fell back and as Baker continued to advance, the officer fired one shot in self-defense, according to Worthy.

Baker was rushed to a local hospital where he died from a gunshot wound to the abdomen. The officer was also taken for treatment at a hospital for a deep laceration of the hand, described as approximately four inches long and one-and-a-half inches deep.

Worthy said her investigation included civilians, police and medical witnesses. Witness statements, photographic evidence of the scene, and medical records were also reviewed.

Baker would have graduated from Trenton High School this past summer. A toxicology report determined he had traces of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, along with fentanyl, a synthetic form of morphine, in his system.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.