York County District Attorney Tom Kearney has determined that police officers were justified in using deadly force when they shot and fatally wounded a suspected shoplifter at the Kmart store in Springettsbury Township last year.
Kearney said Tuesday said both police and customers were in imminent danger when 40-year-old Todd William Shultz pulled a knife on the officers who had surrounded him outside the store at 1094 Haines Road the night of December 29.
Authorities said store employees and customers had seen Shultz attempting to pry open jewelry kiosks when police confronted him near the front exit, where he struggled with the officers despite the use of a baton and stun gun.
Shultz pulled the knife while on the ground, then stood up and advanced on the officers while stabbing and swiping at them, authorities said. After he ignored repeated warnings to drop the weapon, and advanced toward the store entrance and customers, two officers fired several rounds and struck Shultz, who died later at York Hospital.
Authorities said Shultz had learned just hours earlier that he was the subject of an active arrest warrant for unpaid funds. An autopsy further indicated he was under the influence of cocaine at the time of his death, the district attorney said.
Kearney said that no criminal action is warranted against the officers, and the matter is now closed.