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ROOSEVELT — Officers negotiated with an armed man for nearly an hour Sunday, then tried to subdue him with a Taser and special "less-than-lethal" shotgun rounds before a Roosevelt police officer shot and killed the man, according to investigators.
Capt. Tyler Kotter, commander of the State Bureau of Investigation, confirmed Tuesday that there is body-cam video of the officer-involved shooting that left Kevin Vance Norton dead, including footage of the shooting itself.
The captain, however, would not say whether the video shed light on an officer's decision to use deadly force, citing the ongoing nature of the investigation.
"That's the question that we are tasked with finding out: What led up to the change from negotiation to use of force to, ultimately, deadly force?" Kotter said. "That's what we're looking into."
Officers were notified at 12:33 p.m. Sunday that there was an armed man acting erratically near Uintah Basin Medical Center, according to Duchesne County Sheriff's Lt. Jeremy Curry.
The hospital was locked down while Roosevelt police and Duchesne County sheriff's deputies searched for the man. They found Norton in a nearby wooded area at 12:38 p.m. He was armed with a handgun, police said.
"We know from the dispatch logs there was about 50 minutes of interaction between officers and (Norton)," Kotter said, describing a period of negotiation that ended when officers tried to subdue Norton with a Taser and bean-bag rounds fired from a shotgun.
After the negotiations and non-lethal weapons proved unsuccessful, a Roosevelt police officer shot Norton at 1:27 p.m., Curry said. Officers immediately removed a bicycle from the back of patrol truck, loaded Norton into the bed of that truck and drove him to the hospital while an officer performed chest compressions on the wounded man, the lieutenant said.
We know from the dispatch logs there was about 50 minutes of interaction between officers and (Norton).
–Capt. Tyler Kotter, commander of the State Bureau of Investigation
Norton, 36, died at the hospital 30 minutes later.
At the time of his death, Norton was on felony probation following convictions in September 2012 for aggravated assault and fraudulently obtaining employment compensation, both third-degree felonies, according to court records. It is illegal to possess a firearm while on felony probation, Curry said.
The gun Norton was carrying when he was confronted by police was loaded, Kotter said. He declined to say whether Norton fired any shots at officers. He also declined to say how many shots were fired by police or release the name of the officer who fired the shots.
"It's policy. We don't release the names of officers where we can avoid doing that," Kotter said. "We let the process take its course, which means: review all the information, look at it, present the facts to prosecutors and let them determine the findings of the case."
The officer who shot Norton is on paid administrative leave, a standard practice in officer-involved shootings. Investigators hope to meet with Uintah County prosecutors as early as next week to present their preliminary report, Kotter said.
"I hate to give you an exact timeframe, because things come up," he said. "We're working diligently on this. It's not something we're dragging out. It's something we're very focused on."