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Man fatally shot by deputy



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The home at 1463 Meadow Lane, Lyons, where Walworth County Sheriff's Deputies were called.

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May 09, 2012 | 08:03 AM
LYONS TOWNSHIP — A town of Lyons man is dead and a Walworth County Sheriff's deputy is on administrative leave after a fatal shooting early Saturday morning.

The Sheriff's Office identified the dead man as John W. Brown, 22.

Deputies were called to 1463 Meadow Lane, Lyons, at about 12:02 a.m. Saturday. The caller reported that her adult son was at her home threatening suicide and was armed with a knife.

According to information from the Sheriff's Office, when deputies arrived, a woman and a male subject were in the home. The man was armed with a knife.

Deputies ordered the man to drop the knife. He did not and lunged at officers.

A deputy fired his service weapon and hit the man, later identified as Brown.

Brown was taken to Aurora Lakeland Medical Center, Elkhorn, where he was later pronounced dead. The woman in the home was not harmed.

The Sheriff's Office has requested the assistance of The Wisconsin Department of Justice, Division of Criminal Investigation, to investigate the incident, which is standard procedure.

The deputy who fired the fatal shot has been placed on administrative duties pending the results of this investigation.

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"The subject was armed with a knife and he confronted and was aggressive toward the officers," Walworth County Sheriff David Graves later told WITI Milwaukee television news. "He lunged toward the officers with a knife. He was ordered to drop the knife by the deputies. He failed to do so."

Steve Means, executive assistant to the state Attorney General, said it's hard to say how long the state's investigation into the shooting will take.

"What I'm told is it always takes some time with these officer involved shooting cases. It has to be finished with the crime lab, autopsy reports, agent reports, etc. It is usually a minimum of several weeks, sometimes months, because of the different moving parts beyond our control," Means said in a telephone interview earlier this week.

Means said the investigations are routine in a case where an officer shoots someone.

"Any time there is a shooting you have to go through and you have to anticipate questions that might be asked and basically cross your Ts and dot your Is, even though it may appear to other people that its obvious what happened and there is no need to investigate," he said. "It is a process that has to be gone through and it is pretty routine."

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Means said the process is lengthy because investigators try to anticipate all possible questions and run down all possible leads.

"It is frustrating for the media, but we feel it is responsible to make sure we look at everything and do it right," he said.

When asked who fired the fatal shot, Means said he can't comment on that now.

"That needs to be determined as part of the investigation," he said.

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