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Mississippi grand jury clears deputies in fatal shooting

February 6, 2019

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) — A grand jury in Mississippi has cleared sheriff’s deputies who shot and killed a man last year.

News outlets reported a grand jury found Harrison County sheriff’s deputies acted appropriately when they shot and killed Ernie Joseph Lizana in Gulfport on Feb. 5, 2018.

Lizana had been charged with aggravated assault in another shooting two days before he was killed. Authorities said Lizana shot a woman in the throat and fled.

Investigators got a tip Feb. 5 that Lizana was in Gulfport. Sheriff Troy Peterson said Lizana had started shooting at officers as they approached him.

The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation reviewed the shooting and provided the grand jury with the information it used in making the decision to clear the officers, whose names were not released.