BWC: Man wields gun, knife at Wash. K-9 before fatal OIS By:


By Becca RobbinsThe Columbian, Vancouver, Wash.

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VANCOUVER, Wash. — Police body camera and in-car video shows a man pull what appears to be a gun from his pocket immediately before four Vancouver police officers fatally shot him June 17 in central Vancouver.

In a video compilation released Tuesday by Vancouver police, the man, identified last week as Jonathan West Nelson, seems to shout “I’m ready to die” as a police K-9 runs at him. When the dog bites Nelson, he can be seen pulling out an apparent gun with his right hand before nearby officers quickly shoot him. The footage also shows Nelson clutching what appears to be a knife in his left hand.

Officers can be seen on video providing the 40-year-old Vancouver man medical aid. He was later pronounced dead at a hospital, according to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office, which is leading the shooting investigation as part of the Southwest Washington Independent Investigation Response Team.

The police dog, K-9 Remi, was struck in the tail by gunfire. He underwent surgery at an emergency veterinary hospital and was released June 18. The sheriff’s office said Tuesday that Remi is doing well. The video does not indicate who shot Remi.

The video states officers were driving at 12:51 a.m. in the 2800 block of Northeast Andresen Road when three people flagged them down. The group reported a man was staring at them while they were parked in the McDonald’s parking lot, and then he pulled out a gun and pointed it at them. During chaotic questioning, the trio said they thought the man was going to shoot them.


Police established probable cause for first-degree assault, and several additional officers responded to the area. They found Nelson walking on the sidewalk in the 2400 block of Northeast Andresen Road , the video states.

Several police SUVs slowly followed Nelson for more than two minutes along Andresen. Sgt. Greg Catton can be heard ordering the suspect over the PA system to stop and that he’s under arrest. Nelson can be seen continuing to walk away from officers as they followed, the video shows.

Catton can be heard on the video telling Nelson, “This will not end well for you,” before asking if any other officers have a less-lethal 40 mm device. The video shows a large police response with multiple officers shouting commands at Nelson. Catton then tells Officer Jason Haigwood to go ahead and turn K-9 Remi on Nelson.

Investigators earlier Tuesday identified Haigwood, Sgt. James Kelly , Officer Justin Reiner and Officer Philip Wilkening as the officers who shot Nelson.

Haigwood, a K-9 handler, has been with the Vancouver Police Department since 2019. He and Remi are assigned to east patrol, according to the sheriff’s office.

Kelly has been with Vancouver police since 2015. He previously worked for the Longview Police Department and as a reserve deputy for the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office. He was promoted to sergeant at Vancouver police in 2022 and is assigned to west patrol, investigators said.

Reiner has been with Vancouver police since May 2020 and is assigned to west patrol. He previously worked at the Maui Police Department. Wilkening was hired by Vancouver police in July 2020. He is assigned to east patrol, according to the sheriff’s office.

As is standard in police shootings, the officers are now on critical incident leave.

The shooting was the second fatal police shooting in Vancouver this month. Vancouver police fatally shot and killed 43-year-old Vadim V. Sashchenko on June 8 while responding to a call about an aggressive dog.


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