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New details in deadly Beaumont officer-involved shooting - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

New details in deadly Beaumont officer-involved shooting

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Stanley Leger, 80, of Beaumont (PHOTO: BEAUMONT ENTERPRISE) Stanley Leger, 80, of Beaumont (PHOTO: BEAUMONT ENTERPRISE)
UPDATE: Beaumont Police Chief Jimmy Singletary says medical issues may have been a factor in what led an 80-year-old man to fire a rifle at his neighbor Tuesday evening, but that many questions still remain.

"We found out that he hasn't been himself for a while, [his family] didn't think it was going to get to this point, but he just hadn't been himself," Singletary told 12News Wednesday.
           
Singletary says an officer was forced to shoot Stanley Leger, 80, after Leger refused to drop his rifle and aimed it at officers. Leger died late Tuesday night during surgery at Christus Hospital Saint Elizabeth.

Singletary said officers were called to the 3100 block of E. Lucas Drive near the corner with Galveston Street at about 7:25 p.m. Tuesday.

A woman called 911 saying a man had just shot at her. When officers arrived the woman said a man had fired a shot at her as she was in front of a home on E. Lucas. She said the man shot at her from a house in the 4800 block of Galveston. She was not physically injured during the assault.

Police say Leger, a local taxidermist, had a .22 rifle with a scope and fired one round from his driveway across the street at the woman. Police say she was one of Leger's tenants.

"He missed the lady by about a foot, foot and a half from her head," said Singletary.

When officers arrived, Singletary says Leger came out of his house still holding his rifle.

"He had the gun pointed up, and they told him 'Put the gun down, put the gun down, put the gun down!'" said Stephanie Harmon, Leger's neighbor.
    
"Instead of putting the gun down, he aimed it at the officers on more than one occasion, and an officer fired his weapon," said Singletary.

Leger was shot once in the chest and later died.

 "We really feel bad for the family, the family has been in Beaumont for a long time, and they're trying to find some answers as to why he would do what he did," said Singletary.

News of his death was hard for Harmon to hear.

"I felt so hurt down deep inside my heart," she said. "He was very nice and kind to me, and he always joked around with my husband, he joked around with me, he joked around with my little girl."

Three officers at the scene of the shooting have been placed on leave and will undergo counseling. That includes the officer who shot Leger and the two who witnessed the traumatic event.

Beaumont police spokesman Sgt. Rob Flores says the incident marks the first time an officer-involved shooting resulted in a fatality since January 2012.

A news release issued by Officer Rob Flores says the Officer feared for his safety and the safety of citizens and, "was forced to use his weapon to fire at the man. The shot struck the man in the chest and he immediately fell to the ground. The officers approached the man, secured his weapon, and began to administer first aid as they called for EMS."

Officers on scene were not hurt.
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