Maine Attorney General Janet Mills has ruled a state police trooper was justified in shooting and wounding a suspect during a confrontation in Searsmont in September.
Leonard Maker confronted trooper James MacDonald with a shotgun at Maker’s father’s home while MacDonald and another trooper were attempting to serve a protection from abuse order on Maker. Mills said in a statement released Friday that MacDonald shot Maker in the hand when the trooper retreated and fired his handgun.
Mills said Friday that MacDonald was justified in believing “unlawful deadly force was imminently threatened against him” and the other trooper.
Maker was treated at a hospital for his wounds. He was later indicted for felony and misdemeanor charges.
Maine attorneys general have investigated 114 deadly force incidents since 1990. Every shooting was found to be justified.
Mills’ report in a recent shooting noted that the attorney general’s analysis does not determine whether police used ideal tactics or could have done something different to avoid the use of deadly force, or whether there is any civil liability, only whether the officer was justified at the moment deadly force was used.