HANCOCK, M.A. (WTEN) — The Berkshire County District Attorney’s office is declining to file charges against the state trooper who shot and killed an armed man in Hancock, earlier this month. At a press conference Friday afternoon, the District Attorney’s office says the investigation will be closed upon release of the final autopsy report.
Saturday September 9. It’s just before 7AM on Richmond Road, Hancock, Mass. This was the house where Berkshire County DA Timothy Shugrue says Phillip Henault placed a fictitious 9-1-1 about a domestic incident to lure police to his residence… so they could kill him.
FROM 9-1-1 Call:
HENAULT TO OPERATOR: “My brother came at me with two knives and I’m locked in the bathroom. Can you send somebody right away?”
From body cam video:
Henault: “I’m right here”
In the video Massachusetts state trooper William Munch enters the garage door where Henault is standing with two butcher knives. The trooper orders Henault to drop the weapon. He advances on the trooper from the garage onto the front lawn. The trooper fires at Henault asking him to stop moving. The suspect then got up and continued to advance toward Trooper Munch until finally shooting Henault in his torso and lower abdomen.
“There were no other objectively reasonable means that the trooper could’ve employed at the time in order to effectively protect himself. And anyone that was in the home or the public. By virtue of his duties as a police officer, the trooper did not have the option or obligation to run away from Mr. Henault” said DA Sugrue.
After performing life saving measures … Henault died on the scene.
“This report finds that the decision of the trooper to fire his weapon at Mr Henault under these foregoing circumstances, constitutes the lawful and reasonable exercise of self defense in the defense of others. Therefore, criminal charges are not warranted, and this investigation is closed, pending the official autopsy report” said the District Attorney.
The final autopsy results have not yet been released but the DA said its findings should have no impact on the investigation. The DA also said he wanted to get information out to the public quickly.