2016 officer-involved shooting in Willoughby ruled 'justified'

Frank J. Sandor. (Source: Willoughby Police)
Frank J. Sandor. (Source: Willoughby Police)

WILLOUGHBY, OH (WOIO) - Willoughby police say the officer-involved shooting in October 2016 has been ruled justified by the Lake County Prosecutor's Office.

On Oct. 19, Willoughby police were called to the Lowe's Home Improvement on Euclid Avenue for reports of a man attempting to return high-theft items. A Lowe's employee recognized Frank Sandor, of Cleveland, and called police. Two officers initially responded to the scene and located Sandor in a blue Pontiac Grand Prix in the parking lot.

Police attempted to communicate with the man, but Sandor threw his vehicle in reverse. One officer used a Taser on Sandor, but he struck an officer, and ran over a police motorcycle. The second officer then opened fire on Sandor, fatally shooting him.

"It's closure that we wanted, not just really for us but for our officers involved," said Lt. James Schultz, with the Willoughby Police Department. "This was a horrible tragic event, not just for officers, but also for the Sandor family."

Sandor died at the scene. Police say Sandor, has a criminal history, was driving a stolen car, and had several warrants out for dangerous drugs and escape. He also had Fentanyl and other drugs in his system at the time of the incident, according to a toxicology report.

The Willoughby Police Department, Ohio BCI, Lake County Prosecutor's Office were involved in the investigation.

Video of the incident posted online appears to show three shots being fired at the vehicle.

(WARNING: GRAPHIC LANGUAGE)

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