Maine trooper justified in shooting at vehicle


PORTLAND (AP) — State attorney general William Schneider says a state trooper was legally justified in using his handgun to try to disable a motorist’s car after a high-speed chase on the Maine Turnpike.

Investigators say 23-year-old Matthew Cole was driving an unregistered car with an expired inspection sticker when he fled from a trooper on Sept. 15 and crashed at Exit 42. Trooper Kyle Wells fired several shots after Cole, ignoring the trooper’s instructions, began backing up toward him.

Neither Cole nor Wells were injured.

Schneider concluded Thursday that it was reasonable for Wells to believe he was being threatened with deadly force in the form of the moving car and that deadly force was necessary to protect himself and to stop the vehicle from getting back onto the highway.