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WKEF-TV ABC 22 News :: News - Top Stories - Officers Actions Justified In Shooting Death of Armed Man
Friday, April 19 2013, 12:41 PM EDT
Officers Actions Justified In Shooting Death of Armed Man
CELINA -- Mercer County Sheriff Jeff Grey says a Celina Police officer's actions were justified when he shot and killed 39-year-old Robert Hensley.

Police say Hensley was twirling a gun as he walked down the street April 10. He was shirtless, wearing shorts and a cowboy hat.

In a press conference Friday morning, Sheriff Grey released details of the events that led up to the shooting from the time Hensley woke up at 7:30 a.m. and until the time of the shooting at 12:46 p.m.

Police received several 911 calls reporting Hensely's behavior with the gun.

Sheriff Grey reported that when Celina Officer Regedanz responded to the scene and saw Hensley he ordered him to put his hands where he could see them. Hensley reportedly turned aggressively with the firearm in his left hand towards Regedanz.  Regedanz fired two shots.  One shot struck Hensley in the left arm between his elbow and his shoulder; the other shot struck Hensley near his left shoulder blade and exited through right front side of his torso.  The location and angle of the shots and location of Hensley’s firearm on the ground are consistent with Regedanz statement and the statements of the citizen witnesses.

Hensley’s firearm was a .22 caliber revolver.  In the cylinder were two rounds that had been fired, the remaining four chambers were empty.  The two rounds were not fired during the encounter with Regedanz and it is unknown when or where they were fired, although Hensley had spent time at the indoor firing range at Kremer’s Guns that morning.

Grey said the firearm was purchased by Hensley on March 18 at Big Buck’s.  He went on to say that there is nothing in Hensley’s record that prohibits him from owning, possessing, or purchasing a firearm.

Hensley’s family reported that he had been having some difficulty lately.  He had been hearing voices.  Some members of his family had considered asking police to intervene so Hensley could get some help for his state of mind.

Sheriff grey stated “While my sympathy goes out to the Hensley family for the loss of Robert, it is my conclusion that Officer Regedanz fired to protect himself and the citizens who were near Hensley at the time."  “Regedanz has the right to protect himself, but he also has a duty to protect the public, which is what he was doing.”

The Sheriff’s Office will now turn the investigation over to the Prosecutor’s Office for review with a request that the Grand Jury review the case.  “The request for a Grand Jury review does not imply there is a violation of the law, but I believe it is the right thing to do,” said Sheriff Grey, “but ultimately, that is a decision for the Prosecutor to make.”

____________________________________________________________



UPDATE

Robert Hensley, 39, was shot outside an auto sales store in Celina along East Market Street on Wednesday afternoon.

People who work in the area tell us  walked up to the garage with a gun.  But those who knew him say he was nowhere near threatening.

Drew Harner grew up down the street from Hensley and until today, they were neighbors.

"Seen him last Saturday night playing pool. Good mood. Seemed like everything was fine," said neighbor Drew Harner

When Celina patrolman Andy Regedanz responded to the scene, he shot and killed Hensley.  Now detectives are trying to figure out why.

Beth Kohn watched the scene unfold while working at the Subway nearby.

"It's just shocking. We were talking. It could have been us. It's literally just right across the street." said Beth Kohn.

We're told Hensley lived with his parents in Saint Mary's and he was making plans for his own place.

Residents of Celina were shocked to hear Officer Regedanz was involved.  They say he was well liked by everyone.  The officer is currently on paid administrative leave.





ST. MARYS -- Coming up tonight on ABC 22 and FOX 45 we talk to a man who grew up with Robert Hensley.

Hensley, 39, was shot and killed on Wednesday by a Celina police officer.  Hensley was walking around Celina, shirtless and with a cowboy hat on, while holding a gun.

Neighbors say Hensley was a quiet man who didn't cause any problems.

We're told Hensley lived with his parents in St. Marys and was excited about new upcoming opportunities to move out.

We will have the full story tonight at 10&11.

Officers Actions Justified In Shooting Death of Armed Man

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