Expert gives insight on officer-involved shooting investigation process


ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR News) – A criminal justice expert is offering details on the process of investigating an officer-involved shooting.

There are still a lot of unanswered questions about the shooting that happened in Roanoke on Wednesday.

Investigators say Chase Austin was shot and killed after pulling a gun on a Roanoke City Police Officer.

Dr. Tod Burke is a former police officer and criminal justice expert. While he can’t speak to the specifics of this case, he says in situations like this, police are going to look at everything they can.

“You want to get all the facts in order for not only the protection of the police and the due process of the police but also for the family and anybody else that’s involved in this process,” said Dr. Burke.

When it comes to releasing the body camera footage, he says it depends on a lot of different factors.

“Sometimes it depends on the department and their policies. Sometimes it depends on the investigation,” Dr. Burke said.

Chase Austin’s mother Lori Hall says she hasn’t been able to see her son’s remains since the shooting. That’s something Burke says, may be up to the medical examiner’s office.

“From a police perspective, you want to be able to show transparency,” said Dr. Burke.

“So there is that fine line between having the public and the family having full access to the investigative material, or just waiting a little bit until more information comes out.”

WFXR News also asked Dr. Burke about the officer who was involved in a crash on the way to the scene. He says if an officer is declared at fault in a crash on the way to a scene, they could be cited, or could also face consequences for violating departmental policies. WFXR News has requested a copy of the crash report and hasn’t heard back at this time.

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