Officer Indicted For Murder After Dept. Clears Him For Shooting Armed Suspect

Officer William Darby has been indicted for murder after he was cleared by his department.

Huntsville, AL - A Huntsville police officer was indicted for murder on Friday after his department cleared him for shooting an armed suspect.

The indictment stems from an April 3 shooting after 49-year-old Jeffrey Parker called police and told them he was armed and suicidal, according to AL.com.

Officers responded and tried talking to Parker as he confronted them while holding his gun.

The officers ordered Parker to drop his weapon, and he refused. Officer Darby then shot him.

One month after the shooting, the police department announced that Officer Darby was cleared of wrongdoing in the shooting.

Chief Mark McMurray told the media that the shooting was in accordance with his training. Officers do not have to wait for an armed person to point a weapon at them or shoot before using deadly force.

"Officer Darby was called upon to make split second decisions in a nightmare scenario, the likes of which most people will never experience. His training allowed him and his fellow officer to survive as he rushed bravely, without hesitation, into one of the most volatile and unpredictable situations a police officer is called upon to face," Chief McMurray said.

Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle also released a statement in support of Officer Darby.

"Our hearts and sympathies are with the Parker family as they are forced to relive this time of loss. And to Officer Darby, you have our full support. As a valued and responsible member of our force, he acted in accordance with his training. Please accord him the same presumption of innocence as all Americans are entitled," the mayor said.

The reasoning behind the indictment is not clear, but statements from the prosecutor and family attorney suggest that they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat.

According to AL.com, Madison County District Attorney Rob Broussard told reporters that he was "gravely concerned" after seeing the details of the shooting, which caused them to believe it may not be justified.

The Parker family attorney told AL.com, "This incident centers on the growing concern about the mistreatment of the mentally ill by law enforcement. We have to put more resources into training law enforcement on how to deal with the mentally ill."

Comments (73)
No. 1-50
MFLindsey
MFLindsey

Very simple solution - only family and DA's may respond to insane people with guns. In a day or so the really stupid will be dead and the just sort of stupid will let the police do their jobs. . .

Buzz17
Buzz17

Best idea yet, MFLindsey! I wholeheartedly agree! PDs across the nation should make this department policy! You get a call about a mentally ill person, the dept. says, "No. Please call a family member," & hangs up. Probably won't have to wait long for the public to start begging for police officers to start responding again!

Budman
Budman

WTF? Cleared!! Makes no sense!!

Logic Required
Logic Required

Mentally ill people aren’t dangerous? Even with guns? So why are those who are mentally ill not allowed to possess weapons. So why then do people call mass shooters mentally deranged? What kind of bs is this. Hope he gets cleared quickly and sues for malicious prosecution.

Smittyleft ILL
Smittyleft ILL

How do you know ahead of time who is insane and who isn't?

RunCop
RunCop

Mental. Gun. No threat.....sure!

jfpriv
jfpriv

Why are so many dumb azz prosecutors popping up out of the woodwork all of a sudden?

angeleyes
angeleyes

Don't district attorneys have to be voted in or out? If so, vote him out problem solved. Show the new district attorney that LEOs need to be backed when appropriate. Stay strong and hold that thin blue line.

ToPunishandEnslave
ToPunishandEnslave

Guy is suicidal.. calls 911 for help.. cops show up to do the job for him...oh jeez probably not the kinda help he wanted

NTPD935Ret
NTPD935Ret

Ok so when the call comes that the caller is armed and suicidal the police should not respond just transfer the call to the mental health hotline. Oh and when the nut job kills someone the police department can pay out millions because they failed to protect the citizens of their community. Someone just decide which they would like and I am sure that the police will enforce the rules, policies, procedures and laws they are sworn to uphold. As they allows do and will continue to do... “So help me God!”

Katarina
Katarina

"statements from the prosecutor and family attorney suggest that they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat." Brilliant. Sent them on the next call where someone is mentally ill. Better yet, use them for a shield. Fools!

DocRyder
DocRyder

Next armed crazy person call gets assigned to District Attorney Rob Broussard.

cspcapt
cspcapt

you judge a man's intent by the probable consequences of his actions, next time call the prosecutor and let them handle it

davidebrwn
davidebrwn

Mentaly disturbed people kill other people ALL the time. That lawer is flat out lying

The express
The express

This is BS the DA should lose his license grandstanding,wasting taxpayers money,and putting the police offer,and his family in this position. The real crime here is abuse of power.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Is this basically saying that the internal investigation, by the department of one of its own officers, was a "whitewash"? Because that is the impression this turn of events creates.

Poco
Poco

How is an officer to know a person holding a gun is mentally ill? Psychiatrists take weeks to determine it. Going to train officers to be psychiatrists?

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

The headline says that he was a "suspect," but I am not sure that he was a suspect (at least from what the rest of the story here says).

LordSeamus
LordSeamus

Mentally unstable people kill others all the time.......I hope this officer is cleared and counter sues the DA and anyone else involved in this farce of "justice" .

Doc45
Doc45

Don't know how mentally ill he was but the family and the prosecutor seem much more so. Sue the prosecutor for malicious prosecution when the trial is over.

Lilnatvsavg
Lilnatvsavg

If he was suicidal & knew it maybe instead of calling the police for help he should have called his family & a psychiatrist!

dsmarine
dsmarine

40 Shot over the weekend in Chicago! That city has extreme gun control. These charges are ludicrous against this officer. The state AG needs to step in NOW!

Skeezics
Skeezics

So, what was this mentally ill person doing with a gun? Where was his family when he needed them to help him? Sorry, but this officer did what he thought he needed to do with the threat before him. WTF people, a “mentally ill” person can’t pose a deadly threat? What planet do you live on?? Thank you for your service Officer Darby! I hope this absolute mistake is resolved in your favor very quickly.

Ladyfluterby
Ladyfluterby

Everybody jump on the fame and money train. The DA is looking to make a name for himself and the family will be filing a lawsuit to cash in off the city if they haven't already been paid off. Sorry it sounds harsh but it;s the facts that we have seen played over and over. None of these people especially the DA have the guts to get out and do the job of the police officer and find out what it's like to have to make those decisions. Instead they want to sit back and blame the officer for doing the job they won't do. Here's news for all of them, mentally ill people KILL. What should the officers do wait until he does kill one of them then they can take action?

tfort
tfort

There is a difference from being cleared by your department (policy) and being cleared by a grand jury (lawful).

The DA presents and the people indict. He will have his day in court.

Docshatt
Docshatt

You can't dodge bullets and talk a person out of committing suicide at the same time...

JAMSR
JAMSR

B U L L S H I T !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Let's see what evidence come up at trial before making a rush to judgement here. After all, we do not know what evidence the grand jury heard that caused them to indict.

spclopr8tr
spclopr8tr

"We have to put more resources into training law enforcement on how to deal with the mentally ill."

We NEED to put more resources in putting the mentally ill back in hospitals where they aren't a danger to themselves and to others. Societally it appears we think we can solve all mental problems with medication. Some work, but none work when they aren't taken as prescribed. I lost a bipolar nephew in a police shooting because he was armed and off his meds.

BarbH
BarbH

Death by cop. Heartbreaking on all levels.

jericho777
jericho777

"prosecutor and family attorney suggest that they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat."

You have got to be kidding me?! How insanely out of touch these people are!

Inquirer63
Inquirer63

Unbelievable that the officer would charged when the individual had a gun in hand and refused instructions to put it down. The mentally ill can pose a serious threat to others not all do), and anyone acting irrationally with a gun in hand should be presumed to be a threat. The DA was not there and did not experience the tension of the situation.

Spike1
Spike1

Hmmmph! That a mentally ill person cannot pose a threat is a big surprise to a lot of people, I bet . . . especially the ones who survived the psychiatric patient who went in the movie theater in Colorado and shot 82 folks!!

joaquinradioman
joaquinradioman

If someone is mentally ill and has a gun how in the hell can you say that the person isn't a threat...The family should be ashamed of itself along with the lawyer to base their lawsuit on this kind of BS!!!! He should and better be cleared!!!!

Danielson6773
Danielson6773

I'm a use of force instructor at the state and federal level, the officer ABSOLUTELY can use deadly force regardless of mental illness. The decision is based on a person's actions and level of threat, not whether or not they may have a mental illness. The prosecutor is obviously doing this for political pressure or he is completely inexperienced in these matters. This is getting ridiculous that completely untrained people make decisions and have such strong opinions in something they know nothing about. Crazy

pbm4jc
pbm4jc

"they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat."

Are they serious?

Righton17
Righton17

Might want to ask those oh so concerned family members what the hell a mentally challenged individual from their family was doing with a firearm to begin with. I know in my family if we had a member that we considered mentally unstable we would take his firearms and not allow him near one. Jesus, what were those people thinking?

Capt mike
Capt mike

Another miscarriage of justice. obviously a liberal democrat district attorney who hates cops. Indictment is one thing, he should never be convicted in a trial

KCN
KCN

I guess its come to the point where the Police Officer must review a persons confidential medical records before responding? It would then be the families of thosethe perp kills in the meantime that will sue. What is going on in this country when we jump to charging our protectors, due to pressure by protesters whom just like to stir the pot? It won't be long and LE will just put up their hands and say, "it's all yours, folks! Defend yourselves!" After all, why would people put themselves in harms way. It sure as hell isn't the best paying job out there. While anyone would agree that there is, and has been incidents where Officers were negligent and clearly should be held accountable. But if one has a gun. He doesn't drop it when told to and defies authority ( while holding this deadly weapon), he is posing a serious threat to all in the vicinity and must be stopped. Why so hard to understand? Common sense is way too uncommon these days. The criminal has all the advantages.

DWayne63
DWayne63

A mentally Ill man just killed an AZ DPS officer and wounded two more. That DA is insane. If the officer is smart he will demand an immediate bench trial.

DavidPeoria
DavidPeoria

Why did his family allow him to have a weapon?

Lewke
Lewke

"they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat"? What has happened to reality and fact in this country...people can actually concoct any bullshit they want and it is now considered viable by society. Lord help us, we most certainly have a liberal scumbag problem in this country...and it's not going to fix itself...it needs to be fixed and SOON!

Username1000
Username1000

I'm at the point of thinking these ''families" take their weakest minded in thier pack, get em all heated up and send them out in public armed hoping they hit the lottery down the road...

wiilliamssa
wiilliamssa

Is there a gofundme set up to help with legal bills?

Katarina
Katarina

@Username1000 I have had that same thought! The family has nothing to do with them or help them for years, but let them pull a stunt like this and get killed, and suddenly, they are grieving. They wouldn't even realize they were gone if they didn't receive notification!

RKW
RKW

"...statements from the prosecutor and family attorney suggest that they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat."

That's the angle that they're going for? Someone please go knock on the graves of Andrea Yates' children and tell them that their mentally ill mother can't pose a deadly threat to them. Oh wait... she drowned them all.

Retired LT
Retired LT

WTF So the mentally ill person who shot at me WAS NOT dangerous in the 80s but dangerous TODAY???

Danimyl
Danimyl

"The reasoning behind the indictment is not clear, but statements from the prosecutor and family attorney suggest that they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat" Sounds like a slime bag lawyer convinced the family there is a payday coming to them.

Mawmawto2boys
Mawmawto2boys

The reasoning behind the indictment is not clear, but statements from the prosecutor and family attorney suggest that they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat. >>> There is more than enough evidence that disproves the family attorney and the procecution's claim that a mentally ill person can cause harm to others and ultimately themselves... What in the world are they thinking???

hilow4232
hilow4232

"The reasoning behind the indictment is not clear, but statements from the prosecutor and family attorney suggest that they believe that mentally ill people cannot pose a deadly threat." then why does the liberal media want to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill?