ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Anchorage police released additional details Tuesday on the fatal July 1 shooting of a man who drew an airgun on officers in South Anchorage, the third fatal shooting by law enforcement officers this summer of a man not carrying a firearm.
Harry Smith, 59, died after he was shot at a home on the 9000 block of Noble Circle, where he was reportedly despondent and threatening to harm himself and others. The officers who shot him, Bryan Heinz and Michael Jones, were cleared of wrongdoing by the state’s Office of Special Prosecutions and Appeals.
APD Chief Mark Mew said Tuesday that Smith had been standing outside his home when he drew his Smith and Wesson .177-caliber airgun, a weapon which closely resembles the manufacturer’s .40-caliber pistol.
Officers with grenade launchers fired two less-lethal munitions -- 40mm foam-tipped “sponge rounds” designed to knock down or incapacitate rather than kill -- at Smith. One missed, while the other hit Smith but had no effect.