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Deadly force is ruled justified

Hayden

A Fort Wayne police officer was justified in using deadly force to shoot and kill a 26-year-old man fleeing from members of the city’s gang unit and federal agents this past April, the Allen County prosecutor ruled Monday.

Allen County Prosecutor Karen Richards declined to press charges against Officer Derrick Demorest, who shot Marcus Hayden as he ran out of the Eden Green apartment complex late one night in an attempt to evade federal agents trying to capture him.

Hayden shot at agents during his escape and struck a U.S. marshal in the lower right leg, according to police.

Agents from the marshals and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were looking for Hayden to serve him a warrant for violating his probation on a previous conviction of carrying a handgun without a license in relation to a drug trafficking crime.

They tracked Hayden to the apartment complex where he was staying with a local woman, according to investigators.

At about 11:30 p.m. on April 9, the agents knocked on the woman’s door and announced their presence several times. After receiving no answer from inside the apartment, the agents went inside.

Once they entered, Hayden started shooting at them from a hallway with a 9 mm handgun, according to investigators.

That’s when the federal agent was hit, though his injuries were not life-threatening.

Hayden then jumped out of a first-floor window with the handgun and was met by Demorest, who along with members of the city’s gang unit were providing backup, according to police.

According to investigators, Hayden did not heed Demorest’s commands to stop and drop the weapon.

Demorest then shot Hayden, who continued to run away for a short distance before falling to the ground.

Investigators said he was combative as he was taken into custody and during the ambulance ride.

Hayden died at a hospital during the early morning of April 10.

jeffwiehe@jg.net

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