The Invalid Investigation into the Slaying of William Abbe

On April 28th, 50-year old William Abe was shot and killed by three Vancouver police officers. This fatal shooting has received a large amount of attention after video of the shooting appeared online, and last week a coalition of groups demanded oversight into the investigation of this shooting.

As detailed in The Columbian's recent news story, Clark County Prosecutor Tony Golik is asking for an outside prosecuting attorney's office to look into the shooting. As he said, “We need to be introspective and listen to the public right now. I support the call for an outside prosecutor,”... “It would be an important step to take for these cases to ensure everyone has complete confidence in the process.”

Our office received a copy of Deputy Neiman’s report regarding the investigation into the officer-involved slaying of Mr. William Abbe.

Upon our review of the report, it is clear that the investigation was not conducted in compliance with the Law Enforcement Training and Community Safety Act (LETCSA), as it did not include two non law enforcement community representatives as required by law.

Can this investigation be credible if it was conducted without any outside representatives? According to the report we received, the slaying of Mr. Abbe was investigated by a “Team made up of detectives from Clark County Sheriff's Office, Camas Police Department, and Battle Ground Police Department.”

This failure to comply with the LETCSA calls into question the credibility of this investigation. This law was passed so that investigations into officer-involved shootings would be transparent, and so that the public could trust the outcome of the investigation.

We believe the only way to determine if the shooting of Abbe was legally justified is through a new investigation performed in accordance with the LETCSA.

About Angus Lee

Angus Lee is a civil rights and criminal defense lawyer that handles cases across Washington State. His extensive trial experience and background have helped him successfully handled all types and levels of criminal cases such as murder, DUI, domestic violence, rape, driving suspended, and drug charges.

Being accused of a crime can ruin your life. Contact Angus Lee today to schedule your free consultation.