Man shot by Utah police during domestic incident now faces charges

Man shot by Utah police during domestic incident now faces charges

(Weber County Attorney's Office)

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OGDEN — Criminal charges against a man shot nine times when police say he refused to drop two knives in his hands were filed Tuesday, the same day it was announced the officers who shot him have been found legally justified and returned to duty.

Jamal Samuel Bell, 28, of Ogden, was charged in 2nd District Court with four counts of assault against a peace officer, a second-degree felony, and criminal mischief, a class A misdemeanor.

On March 23, a neighbor reported hearing loud arguing between a man and woman inside and outside a downstairs apartment at 2510 N. Charleston Ave in Harrisville, the charges state. The neighbor said fighting had been "an ongoing problem between the two," police wrote.

"The complainant stated the fight had been going on for approximately an hour and was getting more aggressive, with items being thrown and doors being slammed, waking residents. It was also reported that alcohol and weapons were possibly involved," according to a statement from attorneys on behalf of Harrisville City.

The neighbor reported that the fight appeared to turn physical while the couple was outside the complex in the parking lot. "The complainant could see the male grab the female in a bear hug, and saw the female physically punching the male. This action by the couple led the complainant to make the 911 call," the charges state.

When two Harrisville officers arrived at the apartment, they saw that the front door had been "forced open," police said. The officers pushed the door the rest of the way open but did not go inside. They called out from outside, announcing their presence.

Officers could see a knife on the floor, as well as items that had been broken or knocked over, according to the charges.

Eventually, Bell came into the officers' view, walking down the hallway with two "large knives" in his hands and glaring, police said.

"Bell walked directly toward the officers but did not say anything to them," the charges state.

Body camera footage released in April showed the dramatic standoff.

One officer pulled his gun from its holster and pointed it at Bell, while telling him to put the knives down. The other officer also pulled out his gun while both officers began walking backwards, according to court documents. Bell continued to walk in the officers' direction.

One officer announced that he was switching to his Taser, after which police say Bell turned around and started walking back toward the apartment. Bell then turned around and again faced the officers, the charges state.


One officer fired his Taser at Bell, but it was unsuccessful, police wrote. Bell tried to shut the door but because the door jamb was broken, an officer was able to open the door with his foot, the charges state.

Inside the home, Bell continued facing the officers with the knives in both hands and officers continued telling him to put them down, court documents state. "Bell verbally did not respond, but spread both hands out to his side," police said.

Two other officers heard yelling as they arrived at the apartment, the charges state. When Bell began again walking toward the door, three officers fired their guns and struck him several times. He was taken to a hospital for treatment.

The statement from Harrisville officials announced that Weber County Attorney Chris Allred had found the three officers who shot Bell legally justified in using deadly force. A review by the city also concluded that the officers acted within policy in the shooting and cleared them to return to duty.

"The officers did everything they could to try to resolve the situation without using lethal force and gave Bell every opportunity to end the situation peacefully," according to Harrisville's statement. "The city is grateful that the officers were not physically injured and that their body camera recordings captured what occurred during the chilling confrontation with Bell."

Bell was shot nine times, according to a search warrant affidavit, but survived.

The woman involved in the fight with Bell reported he "came home intoxicated and they started to argue." During the fight, Bell allegedly broke the woman's phone. She later locked him out of the apartment, but he kicked the door open and broke the door jamb, police said, and began breaking items in the home.

Help for people in abusive relationships can be found by contacting the YWCA's Women in Jeopardy program at 801-537-8600, or the confidential statewide Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-897-LINK (5465). Resources are also available online at

Resources for victims of domestic violence

Help for people in abusive relationships can be found by contacting:


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Ashley Imlay is an evening news manager for A lifelong Utahn, Ashley has also worked as a reporter for the Deseret News and is a graduate of Dixie State University.


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