Attorney: Man Was Acting In Self Defense When He Killed Sheriff's Deputy

A police officer acted in self-defense when he shot and killed a man in Gary in September, according to the Lake County prosecutor’s office.

The prosecutor’s office told the Post-Tribune of their decision Monday, nearly eight months after Thomas Watkins III, 38, was fatally shot Sept. 12 in the 600 block of New Jersey Street.

According to a Gary police report, two officers responded to a suspicious vehicle around 6 a.m. Sept. 12. As the officers approached a white SUV on either side, the officers noticed two people, a male and a female, were in the vehicle, the report states.

An officer spoke with the male, who was on the driver's side, and asked "what was going on and why was he in the driveway," the report states. The officer noticed the male was "wearing a shoulder holster, which people wear when they carry a firearm," according to the report.

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