A police officer from a Brunswick County town has been indicted in the death of a teen who was shot at his home by police early last month.
Bryon Vassey, a Southport Police Department officer was indicted on a count of voluntary manslaughter during a grand jury session Monday.
Vassey turned himself in and was booked around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday. A judge ordered a $50,000 bond for Vassey, which he posted Tuesday night, WWAY-TV reported.
Vassey was on paid administrative leave after he shot and killed Keith Vidal on Sunday, Jan. 5 in the hallway of the teen's Boiling Springs Lakes home – while his parents were there.
His parents had called 911 for help after the 19-year-old Vidal, who suffers from schizophrenia, had a screwdriver and was allegedly threatening his mother.
Vidal was being held down by 2 other officers and had already been Tasered before he was shot.
It was the 33rd time that police had been called to the same home since 2006 for domestic issues, as well as disorderly conduct and a juvenile out of control.
A 911 call indicates that 2 officers that arrived at the home had little or no trouble with the teen for 10 minutes, but 1 minute after Vassey arrived the teen had been shot and killed by Vassey.
It's unclear how many of those 32 times in the past Vassey had been at the home.
One report from the parents indicates one officer, possibly Vassey, said they "didn't have time" for Vidal just before the shooting.
"After I reviewed the file, I realized that a crime almost certainly occurred, that this was quote unquote a bad shoot and that it needed to be put in front of a grand jury," Brunswick County District Attorney Jon David told the Star News on Tuesday.
"A grand jury by their behavior has apparently agreed with that assessment, he has been indicted with voluntary manslaughter, and the case will now begin in our system."
CNN interviewed the Vassey's attorney just days after the shooting.
Here is the interview between CNN and James Payne, who is the attorney for Vassey:
CNN: You're telling me this young man was not subdued, he was fighting back?
PAYNE: He was, yes sir.
CNN: He was actually taking that screwdriver and stabbing one of the officers multiple times?
PAYNE: In the abdomen area. Yes sir.
CNN: But not causing any injury?
PAYNE: Apparently he had not. Again the officer apparently had a bullet-proof vest on.
Vidal was only 5 feet, 3 inches tall and weighed less than 100 pounds, but according to Vassey's attorney, had become such a threat to the safety of the one officer, that Vassey had no choice but to use deadly force.
CNN: Did that officer yell for help or ask for someone to shoot this man?
PAYNE: No sir. Did not.
CNN: Then why did the detective feel like he needed to use deadly force at that point?
PAYNE: Because the stabbing motions traveled to an exposed part of the down officer.
3221 South Evans Street
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