SPRINGFIELD — A sheriff’s deputy shot a news photographer whose camera he mistook for a gun without any warning, according to video footage released Wednesday.
Clark County sheriff’s deputy Jake Shaw was sitting in his cruiser waiting for information on a vehicle he pulled over, then opened his cruiser door and fired two shots a second later Monday night, according to footage from Shaw’s body camera.
Shaw realized his mistake immediately as he rushed to the aid of the employee, Andy Grimm, whom he knew, according to the video.
“Andy, I’m sorry, brother,” Shaw said. “Listen, dude, you pulled that out like a gun out of the back of the Jeep.”
“I thought it was a freaking gun, Andy,” Shaw said a minute later.
Grimm is heard trying to explain that he waved at Shaw and flashed his car lights, but he also takes responsibility, saying “it’s my fault.” Later, he tells the deputy he doesn’t want him to lose his job.
As Shaw reports over the radio that he fired two shots, Grimm says: “Thank God you missed one.”
Later, Shaw is heard crying and praying that Grimm will be all right.
Grimm was on his way Monday night to photograph a lightning storm when he saw the traffic stop and decided to take a picture, according to a statement released Tuesday by the New Carlisle News, a family business owned by Grimm’s father, Dale Grimm.
Andy Grimm is out of the hospital and recovering. His father said Wednesday is son slept well overnight but is very sore.
The sheriff’s office didn’t comment on the video.
The 25-year-old Shaw joined the department in 2012 and became a full-time deputy in 2015, according to his personnel file. He worked in the jail before going on the road.
Shaw has average or above average performance comments in his file, but he was reprimanded last year for failing to electronically record his hourly checks on inmates.
He’s on administrative leave following the shooting, which is under investigation by the state Bureau of Criminal Investigation. The Attorney General’s office will prosecute the case at the request of the Clark County prosecutor.