Grand jury clears MPD officer

Medford, Ore. — A grand jury takes just a few minutes to clear a Medford police sergeant in an officer-involved shooting that killed a shoplifting suspect last month.
Surveillance video released by the D.A. this week, for the first time we’re seeing the moments that led up to the shooting.

According to District Attorney Beth Heckert, a grand jury took just seven minutes to determine if last month’s officer involved shooting was justified.

Back on January 18th, police say 27-year-old Timothy Caruthers was shoplifting from the Sportsman’s Warehouse near Crater Lake Highway when he swung a knife at store staff and escaped.

An off-duty officer, who happened to be at the store, chased Caruthers to the Crater Car Wash across Highway 62. Police say Caruthers was told to drop his weapon, but started swinging at the officer, identified as Sergeant Darrell Graham.

District Attorney Beth Heckert said, “He stopped, he turned he thrust the knife in the direction of Sgt. Graham, and at that point Sgt. Graham shot twice, the first shot struck Mr. Caruthers in the chest the second shot struck him in the head.”

The district attorney says surveillance video from several businesses, along with witness testimony, provided the main evidence in the investigation.

Sgt. Graham has been on administrative leave since the shooting. Interim Chief Randy Sparacino says Sgt. Graham will return to his normal duties later this week.

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