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Attorney General Report: Shooting Justified

March 5, 2007, 5:50 PM by Angela Kennecke

Attorney General Report:  Shooting Justified
South Dakota's Attorney General says Huron Police officers were justified in shooting and killing a sword wielding teenager at the end of January.

Fifteen year old Joshua Gilchrist stabbed his mother to death and injured three others and then went after a police officer who arrived on the scene. 

The Attorney General's report has more details about what happened that grisly day. 

According to the report, on Friday January 26th at just before 6 in the morning Joshua Gilchrist's sister called 911 and said her brother was stabbing family members. 

When police arrived, Rebekah Gilchrist answered the door, covered in blood from head to toe and screaming hysterically that her brother was trying to kill their mother. 

Joshua Gilchrist was running from a hallway toward the front door, holding a sword, with a 24-inch blade, above his shoulders. 

He ran out the front door toward Officer Daniel Kight and began swinging the sword at him. Kight put up is arm to fend off the attack, and was struck several times. 

At the same time Kight backed down the stairs, he drew and fired his gun. But fell backwards after feeling a jolt, most likely from a taser another officer attempted to fire at Joshua. 

Another officer, Sergeant Daniel Schlader, saw Joshua attacking Kight and fired his gun four times, hitting Gilchrist. 

The teenager fell to the ground, rolled over, grabbed the sword and tried to get up, but Kight used his taser to keep him down. 

All of that unfolded in just ten minutes. Then the ambulance arrived. 

After the shooting, police found a shotgun covered in blood, it wasn't loaded, but several live rounds were attached on an ammo belt. They also found knives and a machete in Joshua Gilchrist's room. 

Later Rebekah Gilchrist told police she was awakened by Joshua shouting outside their mother's bedroom door. 

She saw him chase their mother into the basement and saw him stab her. She tried to take the sword away and that's when her hands were cut. 

That's where police found Betty Gilchrist's body with multiple stab wounds to her lungs, chest and neck. 

Lab tests determined drugs and alcohol were not involved. 

An autopsy shows that Joshua Gilchrist was hit by three bullets, in his stomach, left shoulder and right shoulder. 

An exchange student who was also staying with the family also tried to help stop Gilchrist and was cut on his hands. He was able to escape to a neighbor's house. 

http://www.state.sd.us/attorney/office/publications/pdf/Gilchristshooting012607.pdf

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