No charges for Stillwater officers who shot man at apartment complex

Prosecutors will not bring charges against two Stillwater, Minnesota police officers who shot and killed a man at an apartment complex last March, ruling the use of force was justified.

In March, the Minnesota BCA said officers, identified as Officer Justin Dowley and Sergeant Dan Young, shot and killed 21-year-old O'Kwan Sims after an incident at his apartment. In that incident, investigators said a woman had gone to Sims' apartment at Curve Crest Villas on March 4 and he came out of his room with a gun and fired shots at her. The woman was hit at least once in the knee.

After the shooting, Stillwater police said several people had been hurt but the BCA ultimately only identified one victim.

When police responded to the shooting, they began searching for Sims. When Dowley and Young spotted Sims, the BCA said there was an exchange of gunfire that ended with Sims being shot. Sims was rushed to a hospital where he was ultimately pronounced dead. The BCA says a handgun and several extended magazines were found at the scene.

Police fatally shot a shooter at an apartment complex in Stillwater on Saturday, March 4.  (FOX 9)

After reviewing the case, prosecutors with the Washington County Attorney's Office say they determined that officers were justified in their actions.

In its statement, prosecutors say a number of shots were fired after officers arrived on the scene, including shots that struck an Oak Park Heights officer's squad after the officer pulled into the apartment complex.

After officers spotted Sims, prosecutors say he ran around the corner of the apartment complex and apparently fired off between 20 to 30 rounds. When Dowley and Young went after him, prosecutors say Sims was still holding his pistol and ultimately pointed it towards the officers, who both then fired shots.

As for the woman who was shot, prosecutors say the victim was a friend of Sims' mother. Sims' mother also lived in his apartment. It's still unclear why Sims shot her.

"The decision to use deadly force is never taken lightly, and we recognize the profound sorrow it brings to the family of Mr. Sims," said Washington County Attorney Kevin Magnuson in a provided statement. "In this situation, these officers faced a dangerous, complex, and rapidly evolving scenario. They relied on their extensive training and quick reaction to ensure not only their own safety but the safety of the community they have sworn to protect."