Prince William cop cleared of shooting crowbar-wielding man

A police officer involved in shooting a man wielding a crowbar is cleared following a preliminary review of the case.

Paul Ebert, Prince William County Commonwealth’s Attorney ruled that the September 23 shooting of Jonathan Alexander Diaz-Chavez, 22, of no fixed address, was justified.

Ebert says he carefully reviewed the evidence and the events leading up to the shooting and finds that the officers “were in reasonable fear of death or serious bodily harm.”

Police said a homeowner at the 7600 block of Lake Drive in Manassas reported an unknown man on her back deck. When police arrived they found Diaz-Chavez lying in a grassy area behind a nearby pumping station. According to police, Diaz-Chavez brandished a crowbar and police gave him “several commands” to drop it  as he walked toward them “in an aggressive manner while making verbal threats.”  Police pepper sprayed him in the face and then chased him across Bull Run Creek into Fairfax County.  After another confrontation, police say Diaz-Chavez came at them again with the crowbar, so one officer shot him in the upper body.

Diaz-Chavez, who survived the shooting, is charged with attempted aggravated malicious wounding of a police officer and has a court date of Nov. 18. Following the shooting he was taken to the hospital and then taken to the Prince William Adult Detention Center.

Officer Kevin Curry, a 17-year veteran of the PWC police department, is named as the officer involved in the shooting.

The police department’s chief says that a formal investigation into the shooting continues.

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